Edition LiVeS Journal












LiVeS Journal 2018/1 

























Edition Lives Journal 2018/1

Rajko Shushtarshich


































Edition publisher :

Revija SRP /Svoboda, Resnica, Pogum / ;

Lives Journal / Liberty, Verity, and Spirit / 



i.a: http://www.revijasrp.si

i.a: http://www.livesjournal.eu


Cover : Rajko Shushtarshich, Invisible, 2018


Editors :

Rajko Shushtarshich

Ivo Antich


Endophasia [Elektronic book] / Rajko Shushtarshich. - Ljubljana : Revija SRP, 2018.


(Edition LiVeS Journal; 2018-1)

URL : http://www.revijasrp.si/knrevsrp/pogum2018-1/endoph_48.htm










Endophasia I


How everything actually started and went sideways with the SRP journal?

And on my (in)ability to communicate


Endophasia I (part two)


Monologue or Self-interview (in discussion with myself)


Parallel reality


A play parallel to the administrative or transcript parareality


Parallel reality: (one P.S.I.)


Parallel reality: (two P.S.II.)


Endophasia II


Concerning the nation from metareality – facts stemming directly from consciousness


Endophasia II (continued)


Concerning the nation from metareality – facts stemming directly from consciousness and our daily reality


Endophasia III


From metareality – immediate data of consciousness and our everyday reality


On the immediate data of consciousness


Endophasia III (continued)


An attempt to affirm immediate date of consciousness according to

Henri Bergson from the »Essay on immediate data of consciousness«


Henri Bergson


»Essay on the immediate data of consciousness« concerning the idea of freedom



Translated from Slovenian by Jaka Jarc:

Endophasia I

Parallel reality

Translated from Slovenian by Marko Petrovich:

Endophasia II

Endophasia III





















This here is a sort of monologue,

a talk with oneself,

which occurs all the time anyway,

except we no longer hear it

having been tought as children,

that it is not proper

to talk aloud to ourselves.


How everything actually started and went sideways with the SRP journal?


When I ask myself this question, I must find there is no simple answer. We must return to the doomed Bilten SShP, although cancelling one journal may not necessarily result in the birth of another, even with a ten-year delay. Therefore, I had my personal idea for the SRP journal (Eng. = LiVeS, transl. n.) in the wake of the (birth) outbreak of new democracy in the land of Slovenia. Again, I know this answer is also not entirely accurate and needs further emendation. It therefore all began with my delusion of autonomous Slovenian democracy. Also, from the very start, Revija SRP was devised and born of collaboration. And so we return to the beginnings as personal and particular to each contributor. These date back to when we met through some distribution of roles, or twist of fate if you will, to form what we may now call the Revija SRP circle, though this designation also seems to me worn and abhorrent. So, the start has as many beginnings as there are contributors. I must conclude my attempt to define a start having bitten of more than I can chew, above all, in the hope that the beginning is not yet finished.

I have re-read and re-thought all documents – contributions and responses (but mostly non-responses) sent to the leadership, the body of the power institution of RTV Slovenia. In some cases I will need to go further back in historic memory of the medium and system (its creator). Here, I will summarize only a few of its essential findings and confront them with my current views, covering issues from the Jubilee edition of Revija SRP 1/2, 10/1993, which addresses the difficulties and pains of founding or reviving a certain journal up until issue 9/10, of which I was still managing editor.

A quick and rough appraisal of the current state of things reveals that all is exactly the same as it was when I was writing my thoughts reflection or second thoughts on The Incapacity of Communication or Three Explanations of the Revival and Stifling of a Journal. The issue of incapacity of communication between people and institutions, between men and the system has not changed.

I could just as easily say today that this is the problem of different speech in the same language or merely the lack of patient translators, or the very issue of patience among the translators of the three layers of reality.

I wish to be neither mysterious nor piteous, but I believe that our time – state of consciousness of our us-ness, is so very disinclined to the journal as it was conceived – so unsuitable, that I was hounded throughout by the unnecessary and noxious thought that our instigation comes too soon, and that the spirit of actual democracy with breadth and tolerance needed for critical or even supercritical thought and writing lay ahead, never was, will be, or is, merely my delusion and simultaneously the delusions or error of my voluntary co-workers – free-thinking individuals of Revija SRP. Occasional dejection gave rise to this thought: What is certain, even Revija SRP cannot be published by force. I hope, however, that contributors will try to conquer even this crisis in their own way; time will tell; If it won’t be done, it won’t, or it will, but another time, or by someone else; the seed is (was) sown no matter what.

I will now quickly recapitulate the main reasons – facts that resulted in my decision that further editing on my part is senseless for me and probably even harmful or at least inappropriate for the journal:

Already the Introductory reasoning of Revija SRP (19.7.1993) stated Revija SRP could be an extremely critical journal, researching, unveiling, baring hidden and concealed problems of the media in its unique way, autonomously independently of the power of parties and independently of the institutional power of the media. Above all, the journal would present these issues to the researchers and other audiences interested in, or affected by the problems of mass media. This is what it could be like, all that is tested is tolerance in the institution of the medium.

This is how it was, and how it remains! We did all this to the best of our capacity and ability, but opposition of the greately powerful mighty institution and its wide background (the shadow system of long shadows) is too hidden to unmask plainly publically and unambiguously. As it is, they could all but say: »who wishes you harm anyway? You are insignificant, you don’t exist.« But they don’t, because saying this would itself stand as acknowledgment that we are, that Revija SRP exists after all. The tolerance of the institution of the medium and system therefore failed the test. However, today my view is slightly changed; I think with a tad more despondence that the journal that brought upon itself the annoyance of a powerful medium selling fame and determining who is who, and which wants no patronage from political parties, not even the tiniest, nor such as would wish yet to be founded, today and here, simply cannot survive decently.

Though I based my strategic tactical action plan on knowing that there is no institutional measure, which would not enable a more flexible countermeasure, we contributors continue to face the question (as to us it is not about surviving at any cost) of the validity and sense of some impossible communication. A single reflected (thought-out) negative response suffices for fundamental and renewed consideration ending in a seemingly despondent act – reply: »If it won’t be done, it won’t, or it will, but another time or by someone else«.

After all, through all stipulations of tactical administrative treatment (mainly ignorance and financial deprivation) the journal could be incapacitated. What if this would still not work in our case? Then there exists another improvable secret weapon. The very thought that this sort of thing would be possible in our democracy is paranoid. The journal will only be destroyed by terrorising its contributors, the creators in the editorial offices of Radiotelevizija Slovenija. And I must say that for now these tactics are proving unsuccessful, certain announced contributions are lacking, either late or insufficiently critically courageous. Who among creators is willing to jeopardize their employment with RTV Slovenija, after receiving an official intimation that the journal is problematic and blasphemous, that is, non-idolatry in relation to functionaries and poltroons of the system, both within the hierarchy of the medium and outside it.

Throughout, this to-be-expected attitude of the institution of the medium, stifling and terrorising (erroneously stated) of Srp(ians), was giving rise in its (counter)effects to a sort of (again expected) successes. It is true that this attitude was not happily received because once experienced, it ceases to be a tactical category and becomes a vividly felt reality, but this attitude worked with our potential or possible collaborators, who were not unknown to us, who consequentially did not want or dare write for this impudent Revija SRP, which is exactly why we were only able to attract contributors who were willing to forgo payment and who conquered the fear of mighty sanctions by the medium. These are brave, free, and direct writers. Those of us who will remain, write neither for money or glory and the journal is truly ours as we donate our work and so sponsor it ourselves in its main part (most important and most valuable). It could be said these institutional sanctions combed and purified our ranks, or that the institution and system in this case executed a positive selection for us. Each new contributor strengthening and refreshing, or to put it another way, spontaneously relaxing the direction of our values – refocusing the content of a journal that would otherwise be threatened by the rigidity and dogmatisation of its own value orientation.

You rarely come accross an adversary who will concurrently list reasons (measures and actions), which caused them the most damage. Nevertheless, this is what I need to do, such are the rules of the direction of the journal’s values and this is what follows from the desire to keep our explorative odyssey (self-reflection) alive and manifest to the public, recorded in the historical memory of the M.M. institution and our Us(ness).

Allow me to re-list the most important few, though their weight is, and should remain, entirely a matter of personal perception; it is also probably not necessary to state that it is different for other contributors, particular to each of them.

I could say my hope for a free journal became more tangible in an odd place, the former seat of the Central Committee. This is no space for the birth of something new, which soon became evident.


Right at Tomshicheva 5, DEMOS made an informal promise significant for future Revija SRP, granting what may have seemed at the time,my side wish: the return of the research department status quo ante, which also included the reinstatement of the abolished Bilten SShP. This was to be a part of the payment to »insurgents« – rebels by Her – Spomenka Hribar herself, who was then, in my opinion of course, at the very top of DEMOS’s power, and for our syndicate KUU RTVS the deciding coordinator in the struggle for the RTVL/S medium. The promise was of course void. She never got around to fulfilling it. It is my insignificant question whether she ever intended to at all.

It could, however, have been realized by two of her then co-partisan adherents: Rudi Sheligo, later chairman of the Council of RTVS, and Misho Jezernik, her named but never-to-be leader of SRP (Service for the Research of Programming) and later chairperson of the Council for national programming at TVS under Sheligo. Yet it was they who most contributed to the disregard, annulment, or neutralisation of both the journal and the autonomous critical or at least methodologically correct research and disclosure of hidden though essential problems of the RTVS medium and its role in the system. 1

- The chairman of KUU (Cultural and Artistic Creators) union RTVS Anton Mito Trefalt, having switched from the union track to the three institutional functions (economic, managing, and supervisory), initially entirely discredited our syndicated struggle for a cultural-national radio-television (at first he commercialised his programming beyond all taste and latter supplemented it with the missing political component). I, again, found something else alarming, namely that second act, when he crossed the line or, as I phrase it, broke »Archimedes’ law«.




Then and thereby he compromised the research in its autonomous foundation, endangering expert and methodological accuracy of research at RTVS, or more candidly, he corrupted research and made it as easy to manipulate as he could, rendering it inexpert and pointless. He couldn’t endanger the journal directly but rather indirectly, through destroying research at TVS and particularly the SRP research project.

– It  was supported and amended within the Politically-Informative Programming by our former unionist protégée for PIP managing editor Lado Ambrozhich. He long compromised the autonomy of public opinion research (i.e. measuring and polling) in the programming research services, reducing researchers to political data manipulators, no longer for public opinion research but its creation.

On 23 April 1994, on TV Dnevnik 2 news programme, his »udarnica« (super worker), journalist Rozvita Pesek, in a commentary of such phone polling results, attacked one of »their« researchers, whose name was naturally not worth mentioning, with such pogrom-like zeal as would scarcely befit the severest totalitarianism in the land of Popitov’s regime. I wasn’t too surprised that this would happen in a time of supposed Slovenian democracy and democratisation of the media, I was more surprised at my acquaintances asking me who this researcher was, if it was me. Few looked to the SRP journal, to see the other side. Yet no one added that such pogroms seem a tad out of place on modern national media. Apparently this was not the case. I had no wish to use the SRP journal specifically to expose this incident and its long winded discussion, being that its causes have already been publicised (this time exceptionally also by M. M. Dnevnik and Delo, each baring a part of the whole) and in its entirety in the SRP journal. I must, however, say that such negative publicity as well as the reactions it triggers, in spite of the lowered standards of polemics or because of them, adds to the journal’s publicity, at the very least it informs the general public, though this is not the journal’s target audience, that Revija SRP actually exists.

Already in the articles under the heading translated as Relevant Occurrences in the Light of Values (in the Dialogi journal, 1988) and Games of the System, on the System in the Light of System Theory and a Bit Differently, and The Confession of a System (in journal Likovne besede, 1988), I openly supported Janez Jansha and his comrades. As an expression of solidarity, even if not support, prior to their publication I even sent him these articles (then still fresh action documents) to prison, and also the article titled From the History of Linch, intended as moral support, if he ever somehow did receive these registered postal testaments of mine. Generally such provocation was part of the game with the system, taunting its secret services, if I only wanted to occasionally incite its lacking vigilance – attention to an individual – the System’s mighty class enemy.

And it occurs yet again that we stand on opposite sides of the river, that a few of the closest members of now his SSDS party along with a few former most ardent communists have become the most avid gravediggers – stifling Projekt SRP (research and journal) at RTVS. They got their institutional frame in Jezernik’s Programme Council for the observation of national TV programmes. Again, I was unable to accept the ideological role of that Council’s chairman, prof. dr. Misho Jezernik, my former sociology professor at the Faculty of Arts of the University of Ljubljana and later (three times) my colleague at ISU (University Institute of Sociology), and less still his counter-research activities. How was he able to become chairman of (what I view as) ideological inquisition-commission that wished to, in ways we once knew well, dispose of the then best informative TV show, Darko Marin’s Tednik (weekly review)?


And how could he wholeheartedly support Trefalt’s vision and use of manipulated research and add his own immeasurable propensity for boundless mixing of audiences (that is mixing categories such as gender, age, education, with little care that the samples were too small thus demonstrating only a weirdly and senselessly diluted audience and their appraisals of the programmes), which I believe to be very questionable (if not unacceptable) professional conduct, or even full blown fraud within the discipline, which only serves administrative (or household) research and in particular its use? Today I think that the publication of the the Problem of Tednik article and accompanying disclosure of entirely different views on the autonomy of TV creativity, unacceptable to either of the two worlds, was enough to start an unrelenting though not overly honest institutional burial ceremony for both the SRP journal at RTVS and the SRP research project, of course along with research autonomy within the medium. It is true that They do not find the journal important, to them it only holds significance insofar as it may cause them political damage. But so it has always been in the sight of bewitched political consciousness – unified partisan and depersonalised thinking, which reaches only as far as the pragmatic level of consciousness.

Conflict was therefore unavoidable and the result more or less predictable, being that it still consistently and with minimum variation recurs at RTVL/S. Revija SRP’s grave sin was that it unilaterally publicised resistance to this manipulation and agitated and disclosed »measures of ideological inquisition«. Unilaterally, because the other side either had no desire, capacity, or thought it unimportant and indecent to debate with Revija SRP’s authors, of a journal, which to them doesn’t even exist, which also suffers from being uncontrollable by the system and is not edited or censored by key eminences of institutional hierarchy nor through their committees and bodies. Politically, the journal’s influence is negligible; its target audience is mostly convinced and can scarcely be influenced. However, fear magnifies, and to the powerful and politically sentient drawing parallels with the power of mass media is practically habitual. On the other hand, it is also true that institutional influence of the journal’s particular orientation would in all probability prove impossible anyway, but they could at least try. The people in charge of the institution had every chance to co-influence the journal’s orientation and development from its first instigation. It was possible already when the purported democratisation of the system first began and was expected to take place within the institution, or at least with the conclusion of the charge on radio-television, then known as the Bastille of Communism. 3

As it is, it remains a blaring fact of some civil initiative – to found Revija SRP – that it is already being rescued by the rigid institution for four years (while the journal is published already for the third year). Of course the institution can see such initiatives as nothing but intrusive. If I wish to reflect on my most profound impressions, those which I am entirely unable to neglect and perhaps also to overcome, even though my tactics and roles have changed considerably through my various professions from former action researcher to current managing editor, some experiences remain inerasable; they impact an individual forever.

Allow me to therefore reach even further into the past to cite the most melodramatic excerpt from my substantiation of the purpose of action activities and writings:

The temporary conclusion of the study from 1986 therefore stated: The action of most of my endeavours is blocked, and it appears that such treatment of truly somewhat unusual research will continue and increase.

There are no measures that would not enable countermeasures and the same goes for methodology of action research. The capacity of communication, public activity, publishing, cooperation with related research organisations, researchers who see and feel a similar exploratory atmosphere, was, to put it mildly, neutralised. The University Institute of Sociology, my former parent institution, joined in these efforts, thwarting this minimal external institutional cooperation. But this was far from all. Social isolation is that basic feeling I could not overlook as a researcher. The question I asked myself was: is it perhaps not time for a change in the methodology of action? Being that there are no measures that would not enable a more flexible response.  

A note from a later point in that period: In spite of everything, there followed an expressively depressive account of the state of individual consciousness of the »class enemy«, but the energy was not yet depleted and action continued whilst the researcher got tangled in dangerous relationships.

Present day note: In this case it was the system itself that came to my aid. When I all but gave up on it and its fate, it collapsed all on its own. Well perhaps not entirely on its own, we did help a little, each as we could, each in our field, in our institution of power. And so these new relations had a defining effect on the sequence of events also in the medium of power, RTVL/S. These days there remains no memory of this at the medium, which is why it is precisely Revija SRP that has to occasionally recall historical memory.

However, this isolation remains forever and now hinders me most in establishing a relaxed mode of communication with my former fellow sociologists as well as communicologists. This barrier is not only mine but also theirs; they will always avoid me if possible. I am their unpleasant reminder and memory. This is precisely what hinders me from performing my editorial duties well, I myself also feel I am unable to establish communication with those I aught first have done.

Precisely for this reason I wish to take this opportunity to tactlessly (of this I am aware) remind the powerful and mighty that the action research study Value Orientations of Autonomous Scientific Propaganda also contained fitting Analysis of War Propaganda of the medium in war and was so directly part of my personal or private anti-propaganda war (against) JNA (Yugoslav National Army). 4

To give only one obvious example, because this is not talked about: how strange TVS’s reaction to the ten-day war of Slovenian independence was at times. Not the most appropriate, at a time when a pivotal position was at stake along with exceeding its impartiality in reporting on the war for Slovenia.


Or I could phrase it another way and say that RTVL’s reporting during its historic trial was sometimes too confused and peculiar. And so it remains unexplained how Mihajlo Terzich (JNA’s head of propaganda psychological warfare) was able to explain his and his colleagues’ views on Slovenian TV during the war. This error, lapse, or treason was so great that I did not even want to state it, not even as an example in the Analysis of War Propaganda. (This is then merely an undesirable example, which in my opinion amounts to a lapse so great that it was self-censored by me.)

The action research study truly became an institutional intervention in the Fight for a National Radio-Television (an exploratory and syndical version of the report). But I can in no way accept that the study is useless, reproaches to that effect never and in no way cease because they are part of the standard repertoire of those holding key positions at the medium. That it was not useful to and used by the leadership at the time can account for the consequences, at least the inadequate response to key system changes to which leadership was incapable and unable to respond.

But their adversaries (my temporary allies) would then hardly be able to negate its usefulness. Today things are, of course, different; clutching at recognition quickly helps to erase even later historical memory. And so theoretical as well as practical

 (action intervening) research theses, findings, and discoveries were used to good effect by the Union of KUU RTVL/S. What I found slightly perplexing was that the new RTVS management’s memory is equally poor; that They also quickly and obviously try to erase all traces of historical memory, which is not exactly theirs nor fits with their image, but fails to aggrandise Them completely. According to some iron scenario it recurred that we – who were part of the system’s game met again, but on opposite banks. They were now part of Sheliga’s Council or behind it. But what is a single Council or party member or even chairman to a duke?

There is, though, no doubt that Sheliga’s role determined the Institution’s funerary attitude towards Revija SRP. I was never able to grasp that this will necessarily need to occur (though necessity is clear due to determinism of roles in institutions and in keeping with all my experience in the institution of power).  Every single time it nevertheless occurs, I am as a man (not as a researcher) hurt or even shocked. How can a former and current noted writer, fighter for the freedom of thought and written word now turn and suppress the same, i.e. freedom of thought and its expression in a journal, of others now clearly of different mind than he. And how can he, a former professor of statistics now tolerate such manipulation of data as we have witnessed at RTVS? I considered all this and wrote at length about it as well as all of us protagonists, and this was doubtless my thus far most outrageous attack on the presently untouchable. I maintain that it was entirely justified and stands as it was written.

Though this is a longer recapitulation, a near treatise, I find it so substantial to this report that I will nevertheless reiterate it here, also because it was entirely ignored in spite of my risky »impudence« and not because of it,  as the frightened and loyal would say. It therefore stated:


»Freedom; that is the freedom to say two and two is four.

If this is possible than everything else follows by itself.«


(Winston Smith wrote this in his diary, feeling he formulated an important maxim.) This is the only reason real percentages are so damned important, no matter how abhorrent to politics and the medium. This is the only reason we wage this seemingly so petty and insignificant war for real –unfabricated results or at least against evident bias of »nice results«. And this is why we at Revija SRP, in keeping with its value-orientation, know neither censorship nor self-censorship, even though it may sometimes be tactful and advantageous for the journal if, in agreement with the author, certain formulations were softened or even omitted. But we don’t do this because we know well it would mark the beginning without end, or which in its end denies its own value-orientation and instead fosters: relativism of verity, distortion of liberty, and lack of spirit. These are values typical of post-totalitarianism or, simply put, of our »prolonged past«.

Research services at the Slovenian radio-television, SRP, lost their autonomy and thereby credibility of their results. The foremost abolishers of this autonomy were the management of RTVS and the Council of RTVS. Among them our former friends and brothers in arms in the fight for a Slovenian National Radio-Television have proven themselves above all others, former adherents of the Union (Namely: Rudi Sheligo – Council chairman, dr. Misho Jezernik –

chairman of TVS Programme Council for National Programming, as well as members of said Council Niko Grafenauer, dr. Janko Prunk, Jozhe Snoj, Rafko Valenchich, Franc Zagozhen, Milan Zver. The institutional operational and leading role in this area was doubtless played by Lado Ambrozhich – managing editor of TVS news programme and Mito Trefalt – managing editor of TVS entertainment programme – former chairman of the KUU RTVS Union. To my utmost disappointment, the greatest hope of our union for national-cultural radio-television, director general Zharko Petan joined them as well.) How else am I to make sense of this if not through role-determinism. I imagined several times that if, by some accident, I became an RTVS Council member, I would probably abolish myself as researcher and managing editor of Revija SRP. Let me reiterate the description of our fundamental experience with Them in relation to the revival and stifling of a certain journal, that is, inability to communicate: I want to say that their language, which they now speak and write, has changed. They now also speak and write in Newspeak. They have the power to tolerate, subsidise, or abolish, forbid or in other ways obstruct journals. This is what sociologists call determinism of the role because the role defines a large part of a person’s actions, while character is merely its minor part.

Still, Revija SRP never lost its autonomy. It cannot, it can only lose itself. It records occurrences at RTVS and around it, excluded from the reality of the medium, as though they don’t exist and never did; it strives to preserve them in historical memory. This is why we publish a special segment To Refresh the Historical Memory of the RTVL/S Institution.

Revija SRP is a thorn in the side of those in responsible and important positions who create history. These very people formed the circle of Nova revija or at least stood nearby, these individuals, formerly our combatants in the fight for the freedom of thought and writing, are now in a position to inflict onto us that which they once suffered at the hands of others (now that they hold power and might). They abolish and obstruct a journal, which wishes to be autonomous. Once regime’s victims, they turned executioners, intolerant of dissenting views suppressing freedom of thought and writing. As always, there are exceptions, and the worst is that I can in no way properly expose them, I would only be harming them.

Only for this reason, we contributors to Revija SRP, standing for freedom of thought and writing, are so very sensitive to various forms of manipulation, opposing censorship and especially self-censorship; this is why we are thorns in the decision-makers’ side.

However, we still believe RTVS could withstand a single journal that doesn’t cut up texts.

(Ljubljana, August 1994) 5


The summary was a bit long, for which I apologise, but not for its content; I believe it captures the essence and concretisation of our differences complete with names. You may say this surpasses any acceptable limit and think I just signed my final sentence. I think I did so long ago. Whosoever merely glances over official documents – Revija SRP’s initiatives, applications, and requests and RTVS institution’s official replies (first founding, then co-founding with minimal recognition, and finally at least tolerance), will realize there is nothing to expect here, that there is no point in pulling the wool over one’s eyes (self-delusion). This game, as everything points and as can be seen from space, has been lost long ago. 

However, this has been the case from the very beginning, and we never maintained that this (game) must be won. And so this cannot be the determining reason for the journal’s collaborators to step down. Its value orientation will probably change, have different emphases, but it will be hard for it to relinquish Liberty, Verity, and Spirit. Of course these values are not abstract and absolute but only such or that truth, which we can but do not wish to see; not absolute liberty, but the liberty of the individual in relation to the system (roughly as imagined by Étienne de La Boétie: to say no! To hierarchs and any idol-givers of loyalty, these institutional consumers of the freedom of man; in short, it is the liberty, which we must take for ourselves, only through our own courageous spirit, in place of self-limitation, self-censorship, and voluntary slavery, voluntary non-creativity). And to these it was always necessary to add the freedom from the constant threat of our own institutionalisation – dogmatisation within the value orientation, since it must be acknowledged that even our orientation, once worded, happily rings in a familiar ideological Newspeak-tone (language), particularly, as our spirit is used to such and mostly such music.


And on my (in)ability to communicate

I will specifically reveal the following newer developments:


Nothing changed or improved regarding the inability of communication6 between Revija SRP and decision-makers at the medium, even though some actions of the new Council could also be interpreted this way. Two letters to the new RTVS Council followed by two non-replies, also by new RTVS Council members (the letters were simultaneously also appeals to individuals, I could also say that the letters were calls for help – of a drowning initiative), in my opinion dissolved this illusion as well. Namely, all Revija SRP’s initiatives are sure to drown in a flood of administrative materials from the institution and ministries of the system. Such failure to reply can of course only be explained one way, namely, that what we find so significant is entirely unimportant to those addressed. Obviously the Council’s new members and individuals find the journal and research it contains entirely redundant. But there is always an exception. In our case said exception is the representative of Universities on the RTVS Council, dr. Bruno Cvikl – thanks to him, medium (media) research has thus far not been deleted from the RTVS statute. Now I should list all Council members who, in my opinion, allow the to journal persist, but this amounts to public lobbying, and is therefore inappropriate; it would also be a bit too early and I wouldn’t want to misjudge too greatly.


Content foundations for SRP TVS’s work procedures (future (perhaps someday possible) RTVS research services were also envisaged) are very familiar to me from the standard repertoire of foundations, guidelines, and directions of the institution of the medium of power. I cannot circumvent them in passing. I am in fact almost horrified, when I read the Content foundations for the work procedures of programme and audience research services 26 (not about content but foundations for research procedures without content and explanations: »merely publication of data with no explanation«), which were produced at the radio research unit, unsigned but otherwise in the known style of the unit’s leader Vida Shrot, and which were sent to the director of radio programming Andrej Rot. At the same time I get a slightly better understanding of whence and by whom are suggested or advised all such pogrom-like positions and instructions for the elimination of Revija SRP and critical medium and media research as are cultivated in the Catalogue of Problems – project SRP. Mr Rot’s opinion was, as civilly as possible, addressed in the journal by chief editor Franci Zagorichnik. I would never have been capable, not in such a gentle and elegant way, to address all Mr RAS director’s categorical imperatives – ‘therefores’. Particularly because A. H. Rot goes further than the tried RTVL/S veterans, simply banishing SRPians, pushing us out of the system. It is true that we have no love for it, but no matter how the system subverts us, we are still its part.

The opinion about a certain opinion about Revija SRP by chief editor Franci Zagorichnik can also serve as a model example of how a journal editor can communicate with powerful, mighty, and esteemed representatives of institutions. 7

Now I may return to the foundations, for these count more at RTVS than all previous public initiatives, published in Revija SRP combined. The first and fundamental point states:

»We view programme and audience research as expert gathering of information, which we use in the processes of programme planning and evaluation of the realization of programmes and broadcasts. Although optimal use of knowledge of social sciences is required, on the most part no results or theses are attained, which would hold research value. The analysis of audiences and programmes has often been tasked with being as critical as possible, but this sooner resulted in ignorance than in the use of data. Editors and redactors need to be supported in their autonomy of decisions and not systematically faced against workers, such as for example researchers in the role of critics.«

(Subsequent points are a fairly detailed operational development of the foreword above into a specific description of radio research department’s current activities.)

This is what their and His foundations for the (radio's) SRP work procedures were supposed to be, which I will comment in a self-interview, or monologue, because they do not impact me as related to content but rather to interests. Allow me to explain; the problem of the foundations (in forming conclusions about the activity and perhaps even fate of research at RTVS – fate is here viewed as politics), lay already in the wrong title, or the reverse, in its non-corresponding text. Content research foundations concern or at least touch upon, or at least discuss the content of the research of or at the medium (as we usually say, the entire communication process, or as it is framed by the often mentioned Istanbul declaration (which recommends that TV institutions also conduct qualitative research and analyses of sociological influence of television).

Also, content foundations are not just a matter of one moment in institutional activities, such as RTVS reorganisation. Content foundations for research are and have an individual history, an evaluation, and so exist from the very founding of SShP, DERPO, SRP (Services for Researching Programme, working unit in charge of researching programme and audience, Research Services at RTVL/S) onwards. After all, their framework is co-defined by communicology, philosophy, sociology, cultural sociology, etc. Content foundations are, for example, constantly mentioned and recalled to historical memory by Revija SRP itself, its value orientation also holds potential views of the content foundations for researching the medium and media within the system. In other words, content foundations define value orientations of researching researchers. One among mighty content orientations (foundations) is exactly as this wretched Revija SRP (and Project SRP) discloses it to the medium, disciplines, and concerned public, and as previously revealed by other publications of the said constantly reorganised research units or departments. The cited Content foundations of RAS therefore are not and cannot be content foundations for researching RTVS, they are mere expressions of the penchant to preserve the status quo and foundations for manipulating research.

As they are, they downright call for content (ethical not ideological) foundations for the orientation of research. Decisions about research projects, research, the availability of research, in short, about the above mentioned fate of research, is of course possible without content foundations and outside them. But even such decisions are based on some (though unspecified) content-related or value-related foundations. Public research must also resolve these hidden and covert rebuses, disclose them, and publish its opinions about them. This also was and is done by Revija SRP, for which it is now a thorn in the side of fate.

– Also our KUU RTVS Union’s former utmost hope in the fight for autonomous national RTVS, Zharko Petan, who now holds the greatest power in the hierarchy of the RTVS institution, through this role became (just as I expected and foretold) the main successor – gravedigger of the SRP project (research and journal). Not that this really surprised me (as a researcher), for it is a necessary consequence of inheriting a role in the RTVL institution within the system. Or, in other words, the prolonged past of the medium is mainly personal endurance of certain intransient unchanging advisors and transient and changing generals (directors, chairmen) of RTVL/S. (Some survived over ten man. dir. and assembly or council chairmen). Their fate is predetermined by politics, politics installs them and politics removes them, while advisors prepare everything needed to finally execute the ritual of dismissing and appointing generals. What I see as the most tragic part of their fates is their acceptance and unconvincing enactment of the role of commissary (of civil position) in the declared politically independent and public radio-television in the invented scenario of the current right wing. This game downright begs to be exposed, which the journal with its current value orientation cannot avoid doing. I of course know, that neither myself, nor other Revija SRP’s contributors who do so, will never be forgiven. What is severe is not my believing 

this, but rather my publically proclaiming how Petan’s public championing of Their political option is irreconcilable with the role of general commissary of an independent national radio-television, whereby they sadly don’t have nearly the control of the medium they think. The tragedy of Zharko Petan as a person is this was the cost of the pledge without which he could never be general manager of RTVS. Each time I ponder this, I am amazed by the ever-worsening treatment of autonomous research at the medium and public criticism within the definitely politically independent Revija SRP, which is no mass medium and can so inflict no political damage, at least appreciable by Them at the M. M. and those controlling it. With all my experience, I am still hurt by His ignorance, haughtiness, and lastly (first and foremost) His explanation of my parting, or more precisely, rift with Trefalt or »trefaltism« and so Him. This familiar reductionism (impoverished explanation) of social conflict and utter ignorance of social facts and facts of consciousness disrupted any possible further communication between us, except of course in a strictly official capacity, which is entirely his domain. How this works will soon be apparent.

I think at this point true communication between us has become impossible, pointless, indecent. Revija SRP at RTVS’s initiative can be mediated by someone else, and if this was part of some dramatic scenario and way to lead with emotional shock (modelled after theatrical gossip), Zharko Petan achieved the desired result, but what remains is the aesthetical question of how?

The gen. man. of RTVS Zharko Petan very reluctantly responded to the initiative of TV programme man. Janez Lombergar. (I can say he is one of the rare deciding RTV hierarchs, not to yield to determinism of roles without remnants; he remains a creator with his own views on issues, who understands long-term importance of critical thinking and freedom of expression.) But as I said, I better not commend him or praise him too much, providence states that he also will sooner or later buckle (under the determinism of the role). We could accept the compromise of suggesting content foundations and plan of operation and questions concerning organisational operation of SRP (Services for Researching Programmes) in 1995, and thereby Project SRP and attitude towards Revija SRP, particularly because it appeared, at least to me, that the suggestion was largely coordinated with the then RTVS Council chairman Vojko Stopar. As it stands, everything again points to the same old song, this year’s plan of operation and budget will not pass; best case it will pass too late. And so it goes year in year out, irrelevant which party(-ies) are in power and control of the RTVL/S institution of power and no matter who is the general commissary of the institution of power. This is decided at lower levels, and there it is always the same people, who know these things, and even before any gen. dir. or some assembly's/council's chairman looks twice down their hierarchy, they already have an institutionalised conflict on their hands, which is of course inherited and immediately unsolvable, because his most loyal followers can be anything but critical. And so »content foundations of home economics research« will again be the only acceptable for the research at the medium, except if it was discovered that even that much is too complicated and useless.

Imposing these views with personnel is of course much simpler and again nothing new to the medium; this will also be addressed a bit later, in the self-discussion. 

So the Revija SRP initiative (journal and research project) grows lost and changed from session to session, from transcript to transcript, becoming unrecognizable. In short, it keeps saving itself but in spite of everything the journal keeps coming out for its third year, showing the administration that it is in essence a problem unsolvable by the institution. Let us view this as great acclaim for the journal and its contributors – creators. To the journal’s managing director it signals it is time to step down in either case, whereby accepting the initiative would be the more valid reason. Considering all the above described experience, the danger of compromise would prove a fatal burden for Revija SRP, one it could not bear.

– Of the letter to the cultural minister (cultural representative of the system), Mr Sergej Pelhan and his reply, of course again lack thereof, to asking as politely as possible, why Revija SRP has been discriminated against for three years of its publication.

The minister did not and will not reply, but if a miracle were to occur, the response would come from one his advisors, which is in itself not unusual, and the reply would be exactly what we want – formal, rather than an argumentation of content – an individual’s view of the problem which arose. It would not be difficult for us at all to force such a reply if our public question (open letter) would get published by some M. M. Still, even ministers will one day accept that in a democracy, whatever it be like, at least courtesy dictates a response, while failure to respond to a public appeal constitutes rude rejection and previously expressed contempt for the journal, authors, and readers.

Revija SRP had a single completely reverse and unexpected experience on the part of institutions with its main sponsor: The Open Society Institute – Slovenia. Sponsorship from their fund – pulled the journal from the worst of its financial straits, but what we find more important, offered moral support – tangible proof that there is at least one fund in Slovenia that tolerates freedom of thought and writing, even if we get depicted as heralds of Soros’s eastern policy.

The closing commentary can serve as an admission Revija SRP’s greatest problem, its Achilles’ heal, which is bared so lucidly by Simon Kardum:

»SRP, the journal of the services for the research of programming (hence the abbreviation) of RTVS, which it is not yet or will probably never be, a journal that paradoxically claims its birth-distinction (alternativeness) while simultaneously expecting institutional and public acknowledgment, a journal anachronistic in its genre and stylist mannerism and anarchoid in its stance on content and status, a journal whose creators have not yet decided and become aware (and when they do, it will of course be too late), a journal, independent and of course well trimmed down that could significantly co-shape the institution, which it is targeting (also in terms of programming, something it is not interested in for now – it is interested in ontological issues, less phenomenology of the evident), a journal therefore that manifestly invokes  the ‘three values of the orientation of the individual’, Liberty, Verity, and Spirit (also hence the abbreviation, with Kant’s postulates for love of freedom, enlightenment, and transcendence), such as it is, holding a dull and unsharpened sickle (trans.n. – sickle = Srp), has no capacity neither for harvest or forbeheading. This is a fact. And that it does not know who it is intended for and its readership is un unknown frontier populated by juveniles is a problem that pertains to intent.«

(Simon Kardum, Slovenske novice, 10. 3. 1995, and due to the importance of its findings reprinted in Revija SRP 9/10.) 

The journal’s chief issue is supposedly ts target audience as perceived by Slovenske novice and its collaborators. Who and where is Revija SRP’s target audience?

There is none! Or nearly none! Revija SRP’s target audience is not like that of Sl. novice. It is an elite, adequately defined in the journal’s value orientation; above all this audience is only just being formed, it is longer-lived than the one animated with such great economic success by yellow press. Its potential or possible future contributors we don’t yet know, but nevertheless believe to exist.


Let our adversaries say they don’t exist, or that there are obviously not enough! The critical mass of freedom-loving intellectuals is currently negligible, consumed by parties or scared off and bought by the mighty!

However, all this will apparently not suffice to silence (stifle) the freedom of thought of distinctive contributors, its expression in a distinctive way, irrelevant of powerful and mighty institution and its lodges. What sort of tolerance is this and what conception of democracy (though it occurs symptomatically to the most radical thinkers of the system’s institutions), where institutional criticism immediately gets disqualified and excluded from the system?! Above all, the worth of Revija SRP (though priced 900 SIT) lies not in its price on the market of goods or services, nor is it its intent to look for a minimum share of mass readership but holds only as much worth as there are living values it succeeds in reviving in the spirit of its current and future readers (target audience), scarce though they be; and even how much is not as important as how. Of course this is incomprehensible to merchants, exchangers and consumers of goods: books by the metre, newspapers by the kilo, and programmes by the hours and minutes.

Still, it bears admitting that this covert pursuit defines us to some degree. We allow it to impact us more than necessary, all for historical memory, so that at least in one case this procedure is documented, preserved for those, who will one day inevitably come across something similar. But I think that there is now too much of this, and that in future we could radically reduce our Documents section to only the most urgent issues or official contrivances such as need to be fundamentally worked and illuminated from another angle.






ENDOPHASIA I – part two

Monologue or Self-interview (in discussion with myself)


After all these non-replies, when any answer is most eagerly desired, you will surely agree that human or officially institutional communication is impossible or at least pointless. I find it chiefly indecent as it crosses the threshold of at least some, however misleading image of self-respect and dignity. I am therefore left to talk to myself, we to ourselves or to those who still want to read us, and to those who will one day perhaps read us in spite of everything, if only because they may want to learn what we had to say about institutions of power and system, living individuals, only those who are not completely bent or consumed by institutions.

If there were no critical medium research at RTVL, if I publicised or at least tried to publish or at least preserve in internal research for »The Historical Memory of the Institution of the Medium« none of this, the deciding indispensible lodge members would succeed in erasing all traces of their tenacious efforts at the medium, starting with the screaming of Krichach (Screamer, yeller, trans. n.) and in spite of it, the short circuit (= kratek stik) of RTV STIK and the parade of TV Sopotnik (= co-traveller). All official publications, chronological records, historical and anniversary memoirs contain such praise, achievements, developmental successes (in fairness, also a tiny slip here and there or polite, well-intentioned constructive criticism), that one begins to feel emotional and delighted one ever had the honour of working, or better serving at such an institution. After, there is sometimes whispering in the halls about someone not receiving due recognition and praise of their merits or, perhaps even more frequently, the reverse, that someone else was portrayed as too deserving, important, famous, or indispensible. Surprisingly, you will find nowhere in all the medium’s numerous regular and anniversary written publications how this medium was in fact the mouthpiece of the communist party, most loved and beloved mouthpiece of a totalitarian system and fittingly strictly lead and controlled. However, this will not do, my dear readers! How is it possible, after so many years of democracy, to overlook such a fundamental determinant and guideline of M. M., this plain-as-day fact?

There was critical research at the medium and cannot simply be swept away. It was public, as much as it could be at the time. The risk was great and the results are not negligible. This is exactly why Revija SRP to this day retains an important role in recalling and refreshing RTV institution’s memory and that of the system of the Republic of Slovenia, with even a specific section to that effect and its motto is:


An institution without memory is

Like a company without bookkeeping,

Its strong and mighty

Do whatever they please

Because everything they do drowns

In the forgetful consciousness of time


If RTVS leadership and council never duly examine the merit of methodological reservations and criticisms of inexpert gauging of listenership or viewership and rating broadcasts and programmes at the medium, its competition will do so; it has grown strong enough for this step. After all, what use is suspiciously optimistic data about a growing or at least steady share of viewers, listeners to a medium, if reality is obviously crueller? A medium can now only assess, correctly calculate, and expect a declining number. In the end it is left with nothing but self-delusion, which can be very costly. Don’t tell me those who do so so only want the best for the medium and love it as their child, that they don’t see their love will smother it faster than the same would inevitably happen according to the principles of passing of the power of institutions.

Question: What can it otherwise indicate to build programming schemes, programme planning and evaluation (including suspiciously founded selection of creators kept as quiet as possible, of those broadcasts whose so strangely measured viewership or appraisal have dropped)?

It indicates shortsightedness and injustice, in a word, self-delusion. And if I were to further analyze the cited general content foundation as a value orientation of non-autonomous and inexpert research at the medium, this would not be the first time I have done so. Each time I am forced to do it, I stoop to a level I don’t care for, but this is how it must be, otherwise no communication between us is possible. This has proven the case time and again, and keeps recurring and expressing itself in the form of irreconcilable conflict.

How is it possible to found the reorganisation of M. M. RTVS on misinformation and fundamentally misguided predetermination of preserving or enlarging RTVS’s viewership. (as is the case with the reorganisation expertise by the advisor of Slovenian TV, Justin Dukes)?

A medium that does not want to learn the facts of the actual state of facts is unable to react to changes in the system; in short, it is unable to relinquish its false view of itself and its strength. This is why it prefers to seek advice and counts on assistance from guru-advisors, non-experts in Slovenian radio-television.

How very important Justin Dukes is for Slovenian national radio-television is clear from the willingness (threat) of gen. dir. Zharko Petan to extract RTVS from the Slovenian Scientific Fund, if the latter refused to fund the »Dukes’ project«. This developmental RTVS project, in the opinion of project SRP, is a professional and national scandal, and since Matjazh Hanzhek’s opinion is published in Revija Srp 5/6, it demands public response, from someone at some point. This wretched RTVS reorganization is so important for the future of the medium of power that it will stay one of the key problems in the Catalogue of Problems of Project SRP and will also not be possible to be left out of (erase) the section on Historical memory of the RTVL/S Institution. Public criticism needs to be addressed publically (it is good and appropriate to respond to arguments with arguments), even though it was publically expressed, as far as I know, by only two researchers, Matjazh Hanzhek in the Catalogue of Problems, Revija SRP 8 and Breda Luther in Sobotna priloga, Delo (Channel 4 is something else, advising Slovenian TV, Delo, 14. Maj, 1994) 25

Who can view (this) (such research) as expert (?) gathering of data?

Not a researcher, because such data collection, such measurements, are just the beginning of any research. Without interpretation, methodological data proofing, this is nothing but a start of some domestic household research and above all else, research subordinate to the numerously mentioned programme interests. This is why those viewing research in this way can set Content Foundations for the Work Procedures of Programme and Audience Research Services, plant Fundamental Guidelines for the Operation of Services, and collaborate in constant reorganisations and restructurings of the RTVL/S institution.

The first document also states: »We went from exact written interpretation of survey data to systematic fast publication of data without explanations. Written explanations of data had few readers due to the generally fast-paced work at the radio broadcasting daily fresh content whereby data quickly grew obsolete. Data can also not always be explained unambiguously, not unlike the tendencies in management and views of general programming policy. We chose the policy of the best possible formulation of questions for the listeners and systematic occasional repetition of question with the publication of comparisons. Since editors and reporters substantially co-define themes of questionnaires for the audience and are sometimes themselves better acquainted with the goals of determining the views.« Another states: »Research services must ensure expert gathering of information and general research of programmes. The collected data must be processed expertly, using scientific instrumentation available to the relevant services.«

Once, in the culmination of this same conflict but in the previous regime I asked a public question for historical memory: »Whence does the power of Vida Shrot stem?«

The reply was: »From the simple fact that the she is/was the wife of the assistant to the gen. director (through nepotism then)«. (the gen. dir. or »top administrator« at the time was Ferdinand Luzhar.)

Quoting: »Our colleague V. Shrot’s special power is emphasized throughout. Her ‘expert’ and her ‘self-management’ authority are examples of a heteronomous source of power, consequences of a simple fact that she is the wife of the assistant to the general director.« From The Research about Research, subtitle: Is Research of the Communication Process in the Institution of a Mass Medium Possible?’ How to Destroy any Creativity in a Research Unit? 9

If I ask myself the same question today? …

The answer is only slightly different: »From the simple fact that she is the wife (of the future or meanwhile already sitting) assistant to the director of radio programmes Jozhe Shrot (therefore, through nepotism)«.

And so it occurred that Content Foundations for the Work Procedures of Programme and Audience Research Services, which they are not, created at the radio’s research unit, were unsigned (we will soon see why); from the added note it can be discerned that Mrs Vida Shrot, head of radio’s research unit, has (or the heads have) given them to dir. of RA programmes Andrej Rot; evidently they are also included among the only other official materials for discussion of research at the 10th regular session of RTVS Council. The document title is The Programme Research Service (subtitles: Fundamental Guidelines for the Operation of Services, Organisation of Services and Inclusion in the Organisation Chart of RTVS, Objectivity and Independence of Research Services, Accessibility of Research, Theses for the Treatise on Researching RTVS Programming.) No matter their preference, TVS programme directors (for radio and television) Andrej Rot and Janez Lombergar signed the document, making it the only official basis for discussion at the 10th RTVS Council session (29. 6. 1995) of initial official and public Revija SRP’s initiative to the institution’s leadership and RTVS Council. Downright incredible, I hear you say, but it is not, for this is how things are done at the RTVL/S institution, but one example of actual approach to medium’s key issues through the workforce. It therefore begs the question:

Why research if there are no problems? Why public initiatives if They already know their result as well as how things are done, isn’t that right?

This time the question holds the replies. (In other words, questions are suggestive, which is also generally the basic characteristic of media questions.)

Who can state this and why, and for whom is it true, »that there are mostly no findings and theses that would contain research significance«?

This reproof is stated, overstated, and in fact repeated by those content to execute measurements, collect information, and neither research or relay their findings to the expert public. In short, those who favour secret and internal »research« reprove those who share their research and reports with expert and other public for allegedly divulging business secrets, though they know they are professionally bound to conduct research openly and that RTVS is a public institution.

Who were the deciding factors at the medium, who »frequently tasked the analysts of audiences and programmes to be as critical as possible?«

Such were few. One was Ante Novak; dr. Janez Jerovshek also allowed it. However, Ante Novak was able to do so, because he was not a mere holder of function or functions. (Before, he was Chairman of RTVL Assembly, a director of the scientific institutions ISU EK (Institute of Sociology of the University of Edvard Kardelj in Ljubljana), earlier he was director of former Yugoslav Federal Institute for Statistics (i.e. truth of the Yugoslav system in numbers), and after the War, he was a dependable Party man, one of Boris Kidrich’s close co-workers. Still, he advocated critical research, even saying it must become the Institution’s mirror and conscience. Dr Janez Jerovshek was also once at that same scientific institute, we could say his scientific journey began there, he was hatched there.

In spite of his exposed position in the SSDS party, now Jansha’s SSDS, his approach to critical research differed, he allowed and even supported it. Perhaps infection stems from this wretched institute, or is merely a matter of personality. The regime of the time knew well why found or close it, and whom it closed down.

And it cannot be overlooked that it was these two men who perpetrated one report each, fundamental or key for understanding the RTVL-S medium, while at the same time a research report They found unacceptable and unforgivable.

Already in 1978, Ante Novak’s analysis of subscription (Argumentation of the Proposal to Abolish RTV Subscription fees and Introduce Contribution for RTV) revealed there is no such thing as RTV subscription, that it was essentially a covert form of state tax. In his one of a kind Handover Report Dr Janez Jerovshek exposed the issue of lodges at RTVL/S, which is a key issue for the understanding of the »game of power« at said institution. Both complete contributions were published in the Historical Memory of the RTVL/S Institution, Reivja SRP. 10, 11

Both contributions solve an important issue and are indispensable in the Catalogue of Problems of Projekt SRP, a contribution to the resolution of key issues at the RTVL/S medium. Without Novak’s analysis of subscription my contribution to the resolution of the issue Of the Legitimacy of Subscription Fees for Radio-Television and Value Orientation of the Medium could also not exist. 12

Well, there were surely a few more, who seriously advocated autonomous and critical research of the medium and at the medium, but not as loudly, or did not posses deciding power. On the most part they only advocated it by declaration or even norm. After all, the research in the research departments (RO) was defined by the Law on Research Activity, and by activity and expert orientation RO were equated with autonomous scientific institutes. (I transferred from ISU to DERPO RTVL in 1979. It was important to me that at the time that this unit was equated in status with independent RO and offered even better conditions concerning public availability of its research than ISU, but it soon became apparent that this was a considerable error on my part.) (See: 9.1 Ouverture to a Burial Ritual of the Bilten SShP, Abolition of Public Accessibility of Research, Revija SRP 7/8, 1995.)

However, it could also be true that stimulating (in reality allowing) critical research of the medium »sooner resulted in ignorance than use of data«, because ignorance truly was the main weapon or tool in engaging critical research and researchers (before and after direct confrontation). And truly, the said ignorance is all too painful for me, I pay it too much mind. Still, it always turned out that, when it fails, it fails for the past. Above all, research is not merely servicing data! This also was frequently stated and accepted in competent positions! (in the sense of a declaration, of course.)

Who should support editors and redactors in the autonomy of their decisions and how this must be done, in order for them to be autonomous in their decisions?

Actually, redactors and editors at RTVLS (except for truly rare exceptions) traditionally didn’t even want to be autonomous and independent, they were dependent on and addicted to the Party, League of Communists, and now parties!

Never has anyone appointed any critical researchers at RTVL/S, particularly not systematically, opposite redactors and editors; as it is these are two incomparable categories at the M. M. institution. At any rate, they take any criticism poorly and are particularly intolerant of critical medium research. And compared to editors, a critical researcher at the M. M. institution is no one (counts for nothing), except in their creations (articles, books), but at the M. M. these also count for nothing!

In addition, a researcher, if truly a searcher, in every case has the role of critic (approaching their research critically, based on values) and is likewise critical in the affirmative research role, with a predetermined, well-founded and so-expressed affirmative approach (as for example my approach in my book Revelation to John or On Three Values). If they are not critical, they are merely apologists. But it would be wrong to think that such an extremely affirmative approach does not include open reflection and self-reflection. This is something specialists know and notice, and the result is exactly the same as in the case of extremely critical approach, except with other inquisitors (inquisition commissions change).

Some day, RTVS will need to deeply study the Istanbul Declaration on media in democratic societies and at that point ask: was there ever a norm, direction, declarative orientation against the critical and complex research at the medium, which the decision makers at RTVS called on more unjustifiably or falsely than is the case with (non-)use of this wretched Istanbul Declaration?

I think not! In short, I think that Revija SRP will continue to research important matters unpleasant to the medium, divulge them to the public, and point out facts the medium would rather not know or see; the essential object of its observation and critical assessment is the system (though it appears we are only interested in the medium); formerly we called it society and the antagonism between man and system simply melted away in the idyll of the very term »society«.

Allow me to end this self-examination by again asking, as I did in the Paths and Blunders of SSS (self-governing socialist society):

What is it that allows me no peace, so that I constantly peruse historical memory and rouse unpleasant ghosts and their atmosphere?

The meaning of this detective story is for the individual to ask what point there is to overly extensive institutionalization? I think it is the question: What disruptive consequences did and still does this wretched patronage of power have for the meaning of institutionalized research and production? Predominant (political) power, censorship, and self-censorship are inseparable, they permeate each-other; they result in the loss of meaning and magic of autonomous creativity.

However, such examination and general conclusions are not problematic at all, nor are they meaningful if the interviewer does not introduce the tangible category of names, at least as examples. This is truly problematic and leads to commotion among the powerful and mighty, right up until...

If I may repeat: while so very few ask questions and even they are not always bold enough, those with the right view of research and all production at the institution, as I tried to research and uncover, can set Content foundations for the work procedures of programme and audience research services and write Basic Guidelines for the work of the services devise Drama of Organisation and decree 10 of its Commandments (see: Guru-style Inspired Proposal of the Reorganisation and the Management of RTV Slovenia in the time up to the year 2000: Restructuring of RTVS and The Commentary of its Ten Commandments).

This victorious march of editors of matters, goes as far as regulating viewers, writing forewords stating how individual mediums’ creations should be correctly watched and understood, e.g. the said two TV series (Paths and Blunders of the SSS – (self-governing socialist society), Problems of Creating a TV Series at the RTVL institution and artistic direction of the SSR – (self-governing socialist realism) in late 1970’s Yugoslavia.)

If I am to speculate a bit here at the end, with this impression fresh in my mind, and perhaps untenably comment on just a few (of my) dear contributions, disliked by the institution, considered unacceptable by the RTVS institution because they express particular views on issues at the medium and system, which would not give me a moment’s pause as an editor; I focus on those among them and their like, which I perpetrated myself, as well as a few, which belong in the Catalogue of Problems research project and were my public responsibility as (responsible) editor, and for the publication of which I campaigned with authors and the editorial board, and not least those, which, though indispensible, in my view posed a risk to SRP journal and research project (i.e. politically tricky, trying, outrageous on the unnatural political scene of the medium in the system); I would now comment:

Support for Darko Marin and Tednik and especially the ideological commission’s criticism of the criticism of its ideological role (on the part of Dr Misho Jezernik’s Programme Council) was a declaration of war for power, prosecution followed. 

Criticising »trefaltism« – the legitimacy of personnel and nepotism concerning The Entertainment Programme was viewed as an outrageous attack on his person and family, and not as criticism of nepotism and a micro-value system of one.

Criticising public opinion survey manipulation (public opinion research perverted to become its production) in Lado Ambrozhich’s news programme was viewed as a clear-cut case of counter-governmental service, a liberal conspiracy.

The very former leading champions in the struggle for the freedom of thought and (their) writing did not view the criticism of inability to communicate with RTVS Council chairman Rudi Sheligo as at least disclosing the smuggling of »Orwellism« (specifically – prohibition of freedom of thought and writing at the medium and wider), but rather as an intolerable attack on the greatness and authority of the first and topmost in the medium’s hierarchy. Or, I am mistaken and in this case criticism was understood correctly, but no one at RTVS dared peep to this effect.

Matjazh Hanzhek’s critique of Dukes’ RTVS reorganization project was dismissed as an attempt to oppose Europeanization and Worldliness of the RTVS medium, in short as criticism from the position of narrow Slovenian provincialism rather than the contrary, exposing provincial weakness of uncritically trusting celebrity gurus (of exotic experience) in matters as important as the reorganization of Slovenian national radio-television, let alone expert, though merely introductory criticism of phase one of the reorganization project; after all it is supported and co-financed by the Slovenian Ministry of Science and Technology.

Surprisingly, Mag. Ciril Gale’s interview with Borut Shuklje (Revija SRP 7/8, 1995), was the one viewed as clear evidence of alliance with former political opponents. I think the interviewee was not left unscathed; there was no happy ending for him or us. Most of this and similar sanctions of the written word left no proof, what is left is my purported speculation and the fact that Ciril Gale no longer conducts interviews for RTV STIK  (the public relations office bulletin) nor for Revija SRP. 13

All three compositions concerning the new dir. gen. Zharko Petan: from the contribution by Taras Kemauner With Petan’s Dramatics, 14 to Matevzh Krivic’s A Judge’s Unfavourable Separate Opinion 15 and finally my contribution to the immutability of an uncontrollable journal Personal Legitimacy of a Medium in the System, 16 were viewed as personal attacks on the undisputed Europe-wide established cultural intellectual, a noted personality Zharko Petan and his just fight for an independent civil Slovenian radio-television, we could even say Revija SRP no. 7/8, 1995 was dedicated to him.

Peter Bozhich’s contribution, Tulechi Dervish, 17 perhaps echoed with slightly less bile in the halls of RTVS, though I don’t know why. RTVS journalists are indubitably a special caste – appointees of the first order and could easily feel attacked and offended in their untouchable greatness. Perhaps they feared him after all?

The publication of the Handover Report by the stepped down dir. gen. Dr Janez Jerovshek (particularly the chapter on lodges at the RTVS) excited all sides, the left, the right, and the middle. I can read this as proof there are converts in left and right lodges as well as in-between, or that these days, lodges can get along reasonably well and come to mutual understandings. A rare radical criticism of our newest political dramaturgy has been thoroughly exposed by Taras Kermauner’s contribution, The self-delusional Broken Hero n Revija SRP 9/10. 18

I certainly never received the slightest approval from any notable party for my publication of The Fourth Consideration of Power, (Power in Itself, the Democracy of Power, Slovenian Elections 1992). 19

Of course I am not deluding myself that my part in the fight of the Bastille of Communism let alone my writing o the Lost Battle and about Them in the section From the Historical Memory could ever be erased (forgiven) by the left, the former left, or more precisely, the former regime’s elites.

I assume that my renewed publication and comments of the Games of the System, 20 and Janez Premk’s Process, (Proposal for Renewal and Revision of the Process, for the Labour and Social Court, and Supreme Court of the Republic of Slovenia),21 also doesn’t incite particular understanding, the same goes for perusing more remote hist. memory of The Paths and Blunders of the SSS – (self-governing socialist society), Drama Redaction’s Problems in Creating TV series at the RTVL institution and SSR – (Self-governing Socialist Realism) artistic movement in late 1970s Yugoslavia. 22

I have here certainly not listed all contributions that most excited those, who lay in wait for the particular opportunity to express their dismay with lack of allegiance to the institution, its poltroons. I don’t even know all of them, but above all else I must emphasise that this dismay has no particularly bearing on the cogency and gravity of the mentioned and other SRP contributions, however such speculative monologue is worth recording for Revija SRP’s future hist. memory; it is due to this very absence of discussion, or better, written debate, that I have no other option.

I generally think that external contributors were less invocative of hallway gossip (the further from the medium they were, also physically). This is the case with Lev Detela’s contributions RTV Between Crisis and Rise and Mixed (up) Forms of Modern Television Strategies, 23, 24 Taras Kermauner’s Politics, Justice, Consceince / With Petan’s Dramatics, Matevzh Krivic’s A Judge’s Separate Opinion. Or, it will again turn out that bent-backs at the medium fear, and respect, some external collaborators more than others. I am not saying that no bad blood and institutional dismay were incurred by the first, literary section of the journal (that is, tentatively accepting such a division, which we contributors are not). Literary content supplemented and relaxed the variation of the journal’s value orientation (again tentatively, being experts, we adhered to certain literary methods and expressive techniques). It is significant for the affirmation of creativity and creators, as well as instructive for the institution that we also published, for example, important and good radio and television creations, which were discarded in institutional selection or insufficiently acknowledged. However, literature is in the purview of chief editor Franci Zagorichnik as well as entire Journal’s editorial board. If I were now to speculate and, of course in my own way, attempt a commentary on literary contributions, I would quickly overstep my assignment – chief editor’s pre-set dominion. I can, however, say that to more than a few medium’s experts, metaphorical poetic diction-language is even more inaccessible and incomprehensible than the more-or-less polemical (discussion and discussing) part of the journal’s content.

Anyway, officially the journal is not notable, and does not exist. Though I strongly suspect that the institution – entrenched in its power – needed such occasional rejuvenation through uncompromising critical thinking and expression. And it was likewise, if not more, needed by the system, which is sufficiently ignorant of the power of – its strongest – medium (ministry of truth), and when taking it seriously well needed indeed.

I still strongly suspect that we do this, write this, not for Them, but rather for ourselves and those rare individuals interested in the system so they may defend against its often excessive concern with the wellbeing of man.

Whether such visible problems (as seen by the internal institutional opinion of the RTVS institution) can even be more mildly (mollified), pleasantly (placated), and almost non-problematically publicized, I do not know. Perhaps someone else can, I cannot, and even if I succeeded in such a feat, the resulting contribution would seem to me inanimate, stifled to death.

This is how I see the issues of my being editor today. I must now say, that such a view is not entirely up to me. It is also defined by the medium’s and system’s ruling political climate. The Machiavellian mentality of the ruling parvenus is particularly given to the belief that any serious opposition must stem from some sort of political plot. Assembling a suitable one-sided selection of quotes could demonstrate, but not prove, that Revija SRP exists solely  to attack all key proponents of the purported (especially right-wing) democratisation of the medium, and so-called right civil society. But let us not forget, it is They who

controlled the medium, and, in my opinion, did so rather unskilfully. This is why they were afforded our special gratitude and excessive attention, they were particularly prioritised. And I must admit that a reader, inattentive to details and infused with the habit of haut-polemics, is shown such, and only such intent. Once changes of key positions of power recur once again, these and such contributions may perhaps even be tolerated at the medium, but will be replaced by others, chiefly from the section To Refresh the Memory of the RTVL/S Institution. And again it could serve to demonstrate, but not prove conclusively, that Revija SRP existed with a single or predominant purpose of revanchist settling accounts with (non)successors of the Communist Party and the Self-governing Socialist Society. Sharper political thinkers of the extreme left and right of the political scene (in today’s sense) already agree (perhaps even unanimously) that they have no use whatsoever for a journal such as Revija SRP and find it easier to come to agreements amongst themselves than with eternal opponents, who in their opinion don’t possess the awareness to make serious grabs for power or at least some agreement with it. As Simon Kardum stated, they know not what they are doing (»a journal whose creators have not yet decided and become aware (and when they do, it will of course be too late«). I comment that it is not yet too late for him, I wish him much creative collaboration with the RTVS institution (»also in terms of programming«), we helped more than a few, at least in so far as, once faced with atrocities and nullities displayed by Revija SRP, they more easily expressed their loyalty and understanding to powerful institutions of the system and its mighty.

It probably goes without saying that criticism, of course, accomplished nothing at the RTVS medium. The journal’s further orientation could perhaps overcome excessive focus on a single, though most powerful medium of the system (RTVS).

It served as a good starting point in illuminating key problems of the system. It was better to start off with an in-depth discussion of one medium we know well, than several conducted imprecisely. However this is not the only medium and the system is also about to undergo a radical change. Then this will be Europe and no longer the Republic of Slovenia, a mere sub-system of a large system, which is exactly the climate we are used to and in which we function best. Freedom, even if institutional-systemic freedom, is a burden to which we Slovenians are unused.

SRP-ians could not be fascinated by this great drama of institutionalization, though we find it extremely interesting as an object of observation, reflection. The journal will be able to stay its own individual self, in no rush to get to Europe; not because it is already there, but because no individual wishes to be domesticated in any system. The side of the individual stands opposite institutions and their stifling. We truly have nothing to be ashamed of here, not in Europe. The end result of antagonism between individual and system, man and merely his role, freedom and power, will not be determined, defined, or gifted by any system or institution.

At the close of this chapter in a sensible-nonsensical attempts of the man. ed. of Revija SRP, allow me to restate my doubt, constantly nagging even when I think I conquered or surpassed it entirely. What if I was consistently fundamentally wrong throughout my self-reflection – observation of myself as an individual, my role as researcher and never-to-be managing editor of a journal within a M. M. institution and (its) system and in all these activities, although I always give and project the opposite (too-often sovereign) impression? This is, in fact, a fairly frequent criticism on the part of the hierarchs of my written work as well as actual conduct in the institutions of the system. If this is the case, than the blunder was committed by a tangible individual with a name and last name, this is probably no terrible thing. It is worse if I am not wrong as often as the strong and loyal think, at least in my basic theses and statements. It is all the more terrible, when those very people have their way, who say that typically in this relationship the individual is wrong, and the institution and system are right, and that their opinion, which is not theirs, is the institution’s, the system’s. This story is familiar to us from before, except it was then said that society always comes before individual. Fairly recently we saw how that ended and who was right. Irrelevant of the answer to the posed question, I must maintain that my strategy in SRP’s relation to RTVS, attempting at least minimal cohabitation, failed completely. It is time to refresh the initiative or transform it into a more flexible version of itself. My role as managing editor and failed negotiator must cease, and the role of chief editor Franci Zagorichnik, if he so desires, and perhaps the entire editorial board, whosoever wishes, expand. In other words, it is time for me to resign; in keeping with tradition I do this with due consideration, as much as I am able, and in writing, as well as I know how.

Allow me only, for reasons of propaganda, to restate the appeal from the introduction to the Games of the System in SRP 9/10, only in slight variation:


But so it is to this day that hierarchs, diplomats, and all idol-givers to political power very well know (like textbooks) and understand the – one and only – »Ruler«, while individuals do not know about the »Discourse on Voluntary Slavery«. And they also know the messages of the powerful medium (like a breviary), only it do they trust without objection, unaware of SRP journals, no longer perceptive to their messages, not in this tone, and even if they knew them, they would not believe them, not in this melody!


Ljubljana, 1 July, 1995





1 (See: Pisma programskemu svetu (Porochila raziskovalca Programskemu svetu I – VII), Revija SRP 1/2, 1993 and documents about the inititative of Revija SRP nos. 1/2 do 7/8).

2 (See: Arhimedov zakon, Traktat o svobodi ali Vrednotni sistem, knjiga, Zalozhba LUMI, 1992, Ljubljana; Iz Arhimedovega zakona, Revija SRP 1/2, 1993).

3 (See: Izgubljene iluzije raziskovalca – v boju za nacionalno radiotelevizijo, Revija SRP 5/6, 1994).

4 (See: Vrednotne orientacije vojne propagande, Traktat o svobodi ali Vrednotni sistem, knjiga, Zalozhba LUMI, 1992, Ljubljana).

5 (See: Televizijske manipulacije z javnomnenjskimi anketami razveljavljajo svobodo, Revija SRP 5/6, 1994).

6 (See: O pobudi Revije SRP Svetu RTV Slovenija, O nemozhnosti komunikacije ali Tri razlage o ozhivljanju in mrtvichenju neke revije, Revija SRP 3/4, 1994).

7 (See: Mnenje o nekem mnenju o reviji SRP, Franci Zagorichnik, Revija SRP 7/8, 1995).

8 (See: Upravljanje RTV Slovenija v obdobju do leta 2000, Problem reorganizacije Radiotelevizije Slovenija; Analiza porochila 1. faze razvojnega projekta, Porochilo o prvi stopnji razvojnega projekta z naslovom: Prestrukturiranje RTV Slovenija, ki sta ga financhno podprla, Ministrstvo za znanost in tehnologijo ter Ministrstvo za kulturo, Matjazh Hanzhek, Revija SRP 5/6, 1994).

9 (See: Raziskava o raziskovanju, Ali je raziskovanje komunikacijskega procesa v instituciji mnozhichnega medija mogoche?, Bilten SShP 51, 1983, knjiga – Tiskarna RTVL, Ljubljana, p. 83).

9.1 Uvertura v pogrebni ritual Biltena SShP, Ukinjanje javnosti raziskovanja, Iz Raziskave o raziskovanju, Bilten SShP 51, Radiotelevizija Ljubljana, SShP, marca 1983; (in the section Za osvezhitev zgodovinskega spomina institucije RTVL/S), Revija SRP 7/8, 1995.

10 (See: Utemeljitev predloga za ukinitev RTV narochnine, (in uvedbo prispevka za RTV), Ante Novak, RTVL, porochilo 1978, Revija SRP 3/4, 1994).

11 (See: Primopredajno porochilo Svetu RTVS, dr. Janez Jerovshek, Revija SRP 3/4, 1994).

12 Legitimnost narochnine za radiotelevizijo in vrednotna orientacija medija, Revija SRP 3/4, 1994).

13 Intervju: Ciril Gale z Borutom Shukljetom, Na vojno smo bili pripravljeni, Revija SRP 7/8, 1995).

14 Politika, pravica, vest /Ob Petanovi dramatiki/, Taras Kermauner, Revija SRP 7/8, 1995).

15 Svoboda slovenskega radia in televizije na Ustavnem sodishchu Slovenije, Ob »nepotrditvi« Zharka Petana in razveljavitvi zakonske podlage zanjo; Odlochba Ustavnega sodishcha v »zadevi Petan«; Odklonilno locheno mnenje sodnika – Matevzha Krivica, SRP 7/8, 1995).

16 Personalna legitimiteta medija v sistemu, Primer gen. dir. RTVS Zharka Petana na vrhovnem in ustavnem sodishchu in institucionalne vrednote medija v legitimiteti sistema in Poseben propagandni dodatek – O neposrednih dejstvih zavesti, Revija SRP 7/8, 1995).

17 (See: Tulechi dervish, Reorganizacija Radiotelevizije Slovenija in usoda Revije SRP, Peter Bozhich, Revija SRP 7/8, 1995).

18(See: Chetrti premislek: Moch sama po sebi, Demokracija mochi – Slovenske volitve 1992, Revija SRP 1/2, 1993).

19 Igre sistema, Spoved sistemu, O sistemu v luchi sistemske teorije in malo drugache, Traktat o svobodi ali Vrednotni sistem, knjiga, Zalozhba LUMI, 1992, Ljubljana; and Igre sistema (komentar), Revija SRP 5/6, 1995; Igre sistema, Revija Srp 9/10, 1995).

20 Proces, Predlog za obnovo in revizijo procesa, Delovnemu in socialnemu sodishchu in Vrhovnemu sodishchu RS, Janez Premk, Revija SRP 9/10, 1995

21 Poti in stranpoti SSD – (samoupravne socialistichne druzhbe), Problemi v ustvarjanju TV nadaljevanke na instituciji RTVL in umetnishke, smeri SSR – (samoupravnega socrealizma) v Jugoslaviji iz konca 70 let, Revija SRP 9/10, 1995, (Poti in stranpoti II, Analiza odmevnosti na nadaljevanko Poti in stranpoti, Bilten SShP 31, 1979, Ljubljana; Poti in stranpoti, Izstopajocha stalishcha o nadaljevanki kot indikator druzhbenih protislovij ali druzhbenih problemov z vidika komunikacijskega procesa, chlanek, revija: Bilten SShP, nos. 1, 2, 1979, Ljubljana; Kvalitativna analiza vsebine kritichnih zapisov in mnenj o nadaljevanki »Poti in stranpoti« v slovenskem tisku, chlanek, revija: Bilten SShP, sht. 3, 1979, Ljubljana).

22 RTV med krizo in vzponom, O prihodnosti slovenske televizije, Lev Detela, Revija SRP 5/6, 1994).

23 Z/a/meshane oblike sodobnih televizijskih strategij ali Od objektivne informacije do absolutnega srechelova, Lev Detela, Revija SRP 7/8, 1995).

24 Samozaslepljeni, zlomljeni heroj, From the cycle: Od bratovstva k bratomoru II /Ob Mrakovi dramatiki/, Taras Kermauner, Revija SRP 9/10, 1995).

25 (See: Breda Luthar, Svetovanje slovenski TV, Channel 4 je nekaj drugega, Delo, Sobotna priloga, 14. maj 1994)

26 Vsebinska izhodishcha za programe dela sluzhb raziskovanja programov in obchinstva were created at the Radio’s research unit, unsigned, from the note it is clear they were sent to the dir. of RA programmes Andrej Rot by Mrs Vida Shrot, the chief of the Radio’s research unit (evidently they are also included in the materials for the treatise on the research at the RTVS Council Sluzhba za raziskavo programov Osnovne smernice za delo sluzhbe). 27

27 The document’s title is Sluzhba za raziskavo programov (subtitles: Osnovne smernice za delo sluzhbe, Organizacija sluzhb in vmeshchenost v organigram RTVS, Objektivnost in neodvisnost sluzhb za raziskovanje, Dostopnost raziskav, Teze za razpravo o raziskovanju programov RTVS). The document was signed by TVS directors of (Radio and Television) programmes Andrej Rot and Janez Lombergar, making it the official starting point for RTVS Council’s discussion (29. Jun1995, 10th regular session).

Concluding remark: We failed to understand each other, speaking different languages, but if the system’s decision-makers about the medium would make even the slightest effort they could find in the research about the medium and particularly in Revija SRP a thought or two about the medium’s inevitable fate, which they co-create, not always consciously; a few of these thoughts perhaps never occur to them. There is more about this in the contribution selected specifically for this issue for the section: Iz zgodovinskega spomina, Medij noche vedeti (Propad mastodontka ali le kriza nacionalnega medija).  


In Ljubljana, 1. july 1995


Translated from Slovenian by Jaka Jarc 













Candidates on the Chopping Block, Slovenika in Torment


Excerpts from the tragedy that could be translated as ‘Oldtimer or Oldrhymer Slovinia the Happy Barge Slovenika’ (A National Radio and TV script adapted for the Revija SRP journal, A.K.A. Revija Srp’s Play), Series 5: Candidates on the Chopping Block Slovenika in Torment; Shus’ Game Prediction Theory: A PLAY PARALLEL TO THE ADMINISTRATIVE OR TRANSCRIPT REALITY (P.S.I.; P.S.II.)


/Author’s note: Slovenika runs aground (first at Debeli rtich and again at Cape Savudria); the series is only partially preserved. Not unlike his predecessors, Shus reworked it as a different means of expression – only seemingly wording it more seriously – and published it in the abhorred SRP journal with the same title, adding the subtitle ‘A Possible View of the Issues concerning Electing and Autocracy of Key Officers at Slovenika (with a trembling hand he then added the motto or propaganda plea: »Shus’ Dissertation is not Reconciliation!«

Already in the course of writing his dissertation, and even more so later, it turned out that the story was typical, very important for both Slovenika and Slonewvenia [author’s coinages]. But it was a never-ending story the likes of which can never have a decent conclusion. This was because there were countless candidates. As soon as the first batch took their seats, the second were already pulling them from under their behinds while handicapping themselves as best they could. The embers of the fight over Petko’s helm for a bright future were constantly aglow, reignited every now and then, but never to full discernibility. You can imagine how hard it was to make a decent living (live decently) on Slovenika sailing the Slonewvenian seas being upright. Only our successors will be able to judge. Day in and night out, the torments of Slovenika grew greater. They were turning into a nightmare.

In the second act, first officer Loby, harbormaster Stopanski, and a few overseers (particularly zealously Univ. Prof. Zweifelgeist and former seaman Killstor) review documents and reports on the sea voyage demanding that the potential for shipwreck be assessed and the sources of polluted water precisely determined.

The captain snubs any interference with his jurisdiction. He is the one in charge, responsible for safe passage and the safety of his passengers.

By now, everyone is slightly inebriated, they throw the chronicler overboard, where he grabs on to the towing cable and manages to re-board the vessel. This was not his first rodeo. During his previous post on the Partizanka – Slovenika’s predecessor, the crew had also become fed up with him and tossed him overboard.

He swam for 6 hours and three minutes before getting pulled ashore and ingloriously returned to sender by the old coastguard at the instigation of the Cabinet of President Küchanosh himself and his wife Stephy. It is only thanks to this happy accident that you will be able to hear and see how this tale truly and actually unfolded; what is simply unbelievable or at least incredible is that almost the exact same process was ocurring across the renewed little land of Slonewvenia.

When the RTVS Chamber Choir’s song is unbefitting the circumstances on the Barge, Petko commands: »Fix this for me!« Second officer Jose of Argentina, who doesn’t dislike TV music from Korn-POP (country, jazz, rock&roll, ragtime, or something completely modern) commands: »Have the choir walk the plank too!«

Jose stands up straight authoritatively (as though he were a true Argentinian colonel) and yells after them: »Have a nice swim! And sing yourselves a local tune, we’ll fish you out when we need you.«

Partly out of pity and mostly out of fear, following a slight sobering splash of sea-water on his face, he adds: »Lower a dingy, … with some fishing gear.« (He added the latter after short consideration).

The storm is now imminent, the eerie silence preceding it is just right for happy celebrations and excessive drinking. All attention has lapsed. Chronicler Shus informs Officer Loby of his latest findings; not only has he uncovered three holes, but also found that one of the boards by the keel was rotten and worm-ridden. He reports this to the captain at the most inopportune moment, just as he was feeling up one of the hostesses (he was severely inebriated not to mention excited).

Captain Petko (gatheris his thoughts, quickly recites one of his animated speeches): »Slovenika sails in accordance with a predetermined plan, worked out and coordinated to perfection. A plan needs to be made – worked out (he corrects himself) to plug the holes, which will only be possible after we have collected all the data on the damage along with a reply from the Dreikopf insurance company.«

Captain Petko (ignoring and silencing any attempted comment is already excitedly carrying on): »Jonni Davos (and his dog Artur) gave his consent to raise the funds for the plugging of one non-commissioned hole, with the intent to reduce the gap between ‘inflation’ and the price of Slovenika – and not to plug holes, as the daily press reported! He has not yet, however, stated his opinion as to the guarantee for the loans. In any case, Slovenika will only be able to plug the holes over a period of time. His lawyers are also being consulted about a more long-term mode of financing Slovenika’s sea voyage from Slonewvenia’s budget. BB is founding a new independent company SLON-STAT, or SHIT-SLON. There will be enough money for the whole fleet and for Us. Just as intense are the discussions concerning the project of Slovenika’s transatlantic voyage and its new satellite navigation equipment. This will aid considerably in eliminating problems concerning trips to Venice, Montfalcone and the Canary Islands. But most importantly, it will help in Slonewvenia’s promotion abroad, for which Slovenika needs to get their consensus (Petko hammered his performance home).«

(Shus's note: In reality, Slovenika never left Slonewvenian shores and territorial waters. Something bad befell it at every turn, if nothing else, an incident with Bertoluscone's or Tito of Brioni's coastguards.)

The new captain's aid in Slovenika's economic matters, Mr Jegorij Kandunski (noted economist Kandinski a.k.a. Kandunski) stepped forward to clarify: »I accepted the function of economist and captain’s aid in Slovenika's business matters after thorough consideration and I hope to collaborate well with the Harbour Master's office (the topmost supervisory committee).«

(Shus’s note: He had ample and recent experience with shipwrecks, but has forgotten about it for the future. He however didn’t withhold it; the Slonewvenian sea was too small to keep anything from anyone who wanted to know. This is why he proudly wrote about his experience, in his own words – of course.)

Under such circumstances, it was obligatory for Second Officer Jose Argentinski to also have his turn: »Minute corrections of the visual appeal of Slovenika’s hold and elsewhere will have no impact on its fundamental itinerary. The plan also accounts for visits of notable persons from the worlds of religion, sports, and even culture including music. It also anticipates a joint voyage of Slovenika with its sister-vessels Capodistriana and Marburg an Drau along with all dingies.«

(Only fast boat TM 59 was missing; it had recently been gifted to Pop-korn’s fleet out of sheer generosity.)

In his drunken stupor, the captain had already deposed First Officer Loby. Of course it would not be in any way unusual if he were to replace him with his loyal follower Virnik. So there was nothing more they could do.

Like it or not, Loby confirmed: »After a few years, Slovenika changed to a new type of navigation planning, such that does not allow for financial overextension. In the coming year we will be entering new contracts including those governing mutual relationships; the means for sailors’ salaries will be guaranteed and they will then put their best foot forward. We can also expect a lot from external carpenters, though not all formal conditions have been met to hold a public tender. This is why it would be good to define a system of public calls at least in the next year and adjust it to external carpentry companies.«

Shus (again mumbling to himself, commented): »Perhaps they will also plug the holes, if they get around to it of course.« (As it was Slovenika’s seamen were known to enjoy endlessly sitting about port cafes, pizzerias and McDonalds). In their telegrams to Captain Petek, Captain Antonio Rocco and provincial overseer of the Sobot an Drau Janos Obran supported the unaltered voyage itinerary with emphasised loyalty and unquestionable solidarity, and also particularly supported the envisaged common voyage of Slovenika with its smaller sister-vessels Capodistriana and river boat Marburg an Drau.


The telegram sent by the chairperson of the Port Authority branch’s supervisory subcommittee Gretchen Teacher was less encouraging, stating: »The Supervisory Subcommittee of the branch reviewed the sea-voyage itinerary for 1996 and has not yet confirmed it. The committee will not discuss the draft of the plan until its next session following the drawing up of a proposal detailing the mode of repairing the holes as well as their origin and cause.«

The telegram debate was concluded by the chairman of the Port Authority’s Supervisory Committee Vojtek Stopanski himself, saying: »The content of the sea-voyage itinerary promises varied, competitive Slonewvenian promotion, filling me with pride and I hope that both first officers in particular are conscious of the issues, which 1996 will bring. Stop.«

The message to the Port Authority and other branch committee supervisors never mentioned the prospect of Slovenika’s running aground, let alone shipwreck. Captain Petko directly and principally forbade any and all reporting of the sources of water incursions into Slovenika’s bow. He emphasised: »This is a matter of Slovenika’s command and is as such nobody’s business, not the Port’s Authority nor the Fair’s! Neither is it Stopanski’s, his committee members’, Kavel’s or Havel’, nor is it the business of the Hit-peddlers!«

Author’s note: A few additional Shus’s notes have been found:

On law’s and their (lack of) use: The Law on Slovenika’s General Seafaring in Slonewvenian waters (Bay) and the Special Law on Slovenika’s Seafaring in its native Sea and Foreign Waters were truly complex if not in places curiously undefined; as though they were written with a view to help produce a thick, murky un-transparent fog on the Slonewvenian Sea.

The Sailors’ Representation’s opinion from the first law was altered to ‘consensus’ in the second, which was understood on Slovenika as the right to self-appoint or self-evident autocracy of key, i.e. the most responsible and important officers.

Shus’s note accompanying the resignation of deputy Glory, i.e. the miraculous self-appointment or autocracy of Ambrozini: »According to her statement, she stepped down as a matter of principle, she could no longer endure the game.« (Shus added). However, Shus was sorry to see her go; they were of a similar mind in a few things at least, particularly the peculiar or miraculous interpretations of the afore mentioned laws among the highest ranking officers of the Slonewvenian Sea or Bay: the main downfall of the Slovenika oldtimer was the copiousness of its crew; commanding officers were particularly branched out and included more maintenance workers than necessary. When departing for an especially special important mission so many guests, family friends, acquaintances, and relatives turned up that the deck was bursting at the seams and the bow overflowed. When it docked it supported a number of cafes, pizzerias, and McDonald’s restaurants.

On the other hand, it was common knowledge that there were also too many Slonewvenians; about half seemed superfluous to the other half – i.e. to a handful.

They kept chasing each other out of the games of the system. They scattered across the seven seas, and were also diligently lured to their galleys by pirates.

Author’s note 2: The most important notes again pertained to Skipper Petko (were underscored); there was also a composition that was obviously reworked from materials from the Game of the System or System TV Series:

Captain Petko’s favoured entreaties »I am an optimist.« And »I completely agree with you« appear as compulsory fillers in the dialogues.

Ambrozini (had to add his own to the above): »Well said, Captain.« (Though he can never help himself. Only a couple of steps later he already comments venomously to his aid Prostozidarevich (Freemason-Freimauer): »Of course only on paper and in his head, because Slovenika – is me, Ambrosini! I am the first liaising officer with the godfathers and their aides; it is my responsibility to say who is who; I make and brake them; without me they are nothing!«

Captain Petko regarded the autocracy of the officers below him favourably and benevolently allowed them to put up his favourite Homer’s quote: »Let there be one ruler, one king!«

Shus cultivated a quiet desire to one night stealthily write the following graffiti on Petko’s wall board:

»They did not like free sea-fearing, they wanted voluntary slavery – galley servitude!«

Shus’s notes and comments concerning personnel legitimacy and the general theory of usurping power were particularly exposed. Of course this was in service of propaganda:


Personnel Legitimacy and Illegitimacy of Power and the General Theory of Usurping the Rule of Power


How to Excuse the Usurping of Power


Shus was, nevertheless, immeasurably grateful to Captain Petko and those close to him for their exemplary playing of roles, which enabled him to more precisely formulate his theory (of the explanation or excuse) on the usurping of power in the hated SRP journal (where else could he have). Allow me to quickly summarize:

It takes but little courage to be able to face the clarification of the justification for or fundament of power – or, to put it more precisely – the legitimacy of the system in Slonewvenia (as perceivable also aboard the Slovenika Oldtimer). Such courage is certainly in no short supply among the readers of SRP. It is the answer to a single question: Where does strength, power, stem from, what excuses it?

(He also considered or neutralised the extremely relativist if not cynical reply: It depends on who is asking. He acknowledged that the modality of answers to the same basic question does not vary according to fashion or individual personality.)

Possible answers were stated by the show(-offs) performers (a few of the more important among them follow below):

Captain Petko: Power stems from and is granted and entrusted by God (charisma of an idol – of the one and only).

Mishika: Power stems from and is entrusted by people (through election). (Short clarification: She was very popular or well-liked, so-to-say elected in advance.)

Ambrozini: Power stems from strength directly (self-established, achieved through usurping, maintained through autocracy – Machiavellian argumentation of power.) (no comment – no problem)

Krefalt: Power stems from ownership (paid for or paid off, supported through nepotism) (short comment: The power of capital, money, charging provisions et sim. is ok (legitimate), if it is invested correctly: in public relations, in the marketing of one’s own personality and of those closest to one.)

Fatty Piki: Power stems from cunning and the recognition of Them (illuminati, the most secret lodges.) (Comment: This is more a case of secret strength than visible power, but can surpass even the power of a local god.)

Pchko: Power stems from secrecy, from retaining, keeping and controlling the release of key information. (Comment: This is the true key to hidden, but also insidious strength.)

Second First Officer Andreas Jose (of Argentina): From blind obedience and heroic stance (towards the hierarchically superior). (Comment: general, or in his case general director.)

Sirs Bearable (or Unbearable) and Contrite: Power stems from the discreet charm of the cultURelite. (This is why they got the worst end of the stick or found it the hardest to place it.)


Shus’s note: This does not mean they didn’t occasionally combine their definitions a little bit. Sometimes they exchanged hands during their card-game.

Shus’s note: They followed the example of their teacher, first dictator Lushka and their president Küchanosh, but always and primarily that of Tito Brionski the first and only and unparalleled. (His greatest admirer and the biggest authority on him was Captain Petko. Hence Petko’s advantage over the others.) The concept of power that stems from, or which would be justified in the freedom of the spirit of the oppressed seemed to them extremely dated.

Shus was now even more tortured by the self-critical question, which he posed to himself on numerous occasions: »What is my definition of power? Is it distinctive and free enough? Is this really a natural drive at all? Nonsense! (He said to himself.) An unnecessary question; I have none (neither strength nor power). Well I have some – strength (he corrected himself), but this is not a practical strength; it is extremely revolting to any rule.

But, at least this feature makes it identifiable. It has no desire for power; it constantly stands against it. If this is strength, it stems from nothing but a rebellious spirit.« (Well, Shus had already described it in his Treatise on Freedom; it was done similarly or better by all his collocutors outside of time, particularly Étienne de La Boétie, Henri Bergsonin, also in his own way Archimedes, Lao Zi and Shus’s favourite – John the Evangelist.)

»When someone is wickedly poisoning another, demeaning and selling them while declaring to be liberating them, this is abhorrent. But when hundreds and thousands rush voluntarily into slavery yearning for the words of their guides leading the barely freed men back into slavery, it is another thing altogether. You weren’t sold; it is of your own volition. No, nothing can be achieved here, not even using the appropriate dose of Étienne's medicine. It is They who hold all the means of persuasion. Such liberation is in fact to the exact tastes of »the liberated« – adorned. Étienne de La Boétie further adds: »There is nothing more repugnant than voluntary slavery, a concept so abhorrent that language has no name for it.«

»When someone vilely poisons another, enslaving them while declaring they are liberating them, it is always and will long remain possible to achieve a decent counter-effect with a good dose of Étienne's medicine from his essay ‘The Discourse of Voluntary Servitude’. Such liberation is most certainly not to the taste of the liberated, not even if adorned.« So says Étienne de La Boétie adding:

»To be honest, it is fruitless to discuss whether freedom is natural, if for no other reason, because no one can be enslaved without some evil being inflicted onto them by force. And no thing exists that would be so adverse to the world ruled by wise nature, than injustice – unfairness itself.«

But Slovenika and Slonewvenia are beyond even such saving. So we are beyond help (added Shus sourly):



Author’s note: In conclusion and addition some strange unintelligible notes turned up about godfathers; these were auto-censored in Shus’s play; I quote them anyway:

 Notes on Godfathers


– Jonni Davos with his dog Artur: »I want a story of success, not excess… Election is for oxen; I’ll be the prime minister of Slonewvenia if the world collapses… ‘You buy one or two people’, it’s really no big thing.« He raged because they were dragging their feet on privatisation, i.e. return of the pigs to the trough; his only solace was that this also delayed social unrest of the destitute and impoverished. He truly disliked poverty; he was almost repulsed by it. (Auth. note: Shus foresaw his march in Razzgarjeno zharishche, Revija SRP 19/20.)

President Küchanosh himself had a hard time restraining his scoundrels, who continuously made trouble for him and caused one scandal after the other (from Elan to Saftti, from the weapons’ affair in Marburk an Drau to trading with the Israelites, to the Newspaper War – or war for newspaper, and much more).

He was most worried that it was still undecided who will finally be assigned blame for the murder of the agreeable people’s president (and his agreeable ape) Kremplbergar.

Janez Dolinski, who got it into his head that he would himself be president one day, also vexed him. But it all turned out well. Küchanosh announced his candidacy to be re-elected as Slonewvenia's president and Their acquisitions were at risk. (Auth. Note: Shus predicted this with certainty and published his prediction in Revija SRP 19/20. He arrived at it not with the help of golden retrievers, but based on the general evaluative theory of autocracy (personal legitimacy) and theory of parallel systems.)

- Janez Dolinski (a.k.a. Mirandolski) was also not in for anything good; again, he appeared to be on the verge of losing his vice-admiral’s stripes along with his special Maris brigade as well as the secret service. If this is the case, these are star wars, which have transformed into a misguided syndicated clash (of godfathers) of the most liberating and independent unions of Slonewvenia and also in small part into a ruthless cockfight between the renewed Sokoli and renovated Orli.

Shus’s note: as well as between the Young Veneti and Old Veneti and simultaneously Old Slavs and Slowland Slavs. (The names kept changing, but the story remained the same.) However, the president proved too tough a nut for him to crack. He was so lovable that even the most devoted religious ladies would confess to their priests that they could not help voting for him any chance (election) they got, even though the priests clearly told them not to. And so, not much could be done while he was actively participating. – Wauchar Polihitski ducked behind Davoshki for a bit. He planned to do the most from within; this was truly his specialty. He knew how to wait for the right opportunity. He never publically engaged in risky games of eliminating favourites, at least not until he knew what the outcome would be. He still had control of secret reports and a good part of the golden »retrievers«. Even though he allowed the most part of the lists and poems by secret retrievers to be burned, no one knew to what and about whom he held onto just in case.

– Joseph Kavel headed the fair to the best of his ability, but in times of the Titoyugend Verein many were utterly dissatisfied with him. He did replace Herman Regalnik (Count of Celje) and this was no small feat. Still, he worried that one day the real Count of Celje might rise from the dead, he would easily undercut his frock; all or nothing – he thought far, far ahead: Like Havel so Kavel.

– Perhaps the most important part of putting the play on was that the godfathers were really not as at each other’s throats as it appeared. They got along nicely and when it was truly necessary, they discussed matters and came to agreements. They played each other following special rules, which are not as yet widely known. It is known, however, that these rules were followed by mid-range godfathers with not too much power in the Mediterraneo section.

Auth. note: Shus's capacity to predict outcomes, of which he was so proud, is no special skill; It is attainable by anyone, who is at least slightly familiar with game theory of the system and institutional roles. The iron scenario of institutions is the same everywhere.

Individual performers may have the option to steer the boat into a different direction at any time, but they rarely do so. It is possible to direct the episodes to portray the transcript reality using select relevant dialogues from the sessions of the main committees, governments, councils, fairs and similar important and mighty institutions of systems big or small. Reality to reality or non-constructed reality, procedures and moves made by the main actors are surprisingly similar. Were this not the case, the play, let alone the endless series could never get written and the chronicler (scribe) would be unable to record it. And so, dialogues can be freely arranged, replaced, and of course shortened. This adaptation for SRP is the only one following the author’s intent, with which he in no way came up with on his own. The events are sometimes slightly chronologically rearranged and condensed. Still, the author chose to set Captain Petko’s hearing at the main supervisory committee’s session of Harbour Command to music by W.A. Mozart.

Next, Shus turned his attention to discussion outside time, consulting wise men about what to do before, as stated above, writing the essay Atop the Roof Covering of the World (The Visit of Dolinci-Lowlanders’s cowering of the world). He carefully omitted Küchanosh’s ascent of the Wall of China and his walk backward across the wall of time. He reassured himself that he would absolutely make it more literary, just at another time.

In his conclusion Shus opted to double check the gratitude to the spoilers of the game, particularly his own lack of gratitude. He felt, he spoke of it most in the conclusion of the first series; though he had to slightly tweak it – or move it into the administrative reality. Here, he only made a quick summary:


4. Deliberations on Power

(Étienne de La Boétie: Le discours de la servitude volontaire):


Nations themselves allow and by their actions effect subjugation

merely refusing to serve would achieve their self-determination.

A nation suppresses itself

the very nation that could well be able

to choose between

living freely or in servitude.

At the very end he merely sighed and sang an old sea shanty:

For freedom yearned the sailor, and his brothers and his sisters …

Unfortunately the rest of the lyrics escaped him; he wondered how it was possible to forget such a beautiful song so quickly.




Author’s note: A short recapitulation of the said episodes has again been included in the Add-on supplement, which also includes a few longer, though extremely strange compositions: Too many Ifs, Becauses and Whethers; Candidates on the Chopping Block, Media in Torment; Scorching Core; Echoes of the Past; On the Roof Covering the World. Shus published these in passing in the hated SRP journal. Shus’s blunders in the 4th Deliberation on Power are available to all interested in the Tractate or Add-on. (And if anyone wants to know more about them, i.e. godfathers, they should know, or rather make it known to authorities that they are dangerous.)

P.S. (Parallel Reality):

The fourth deliberation on power: Shus wrote Power in Itself, Democracy of Power (Thoughts during the 1992 election campaign in the new Country of Slovenia) to the background music of Maurice Ravel’s Bolero. Usually authors, for reasons unbeknown to me, don’t give this information, though many have this habit.

P.P.S. (para-parallel reality):

My advice: »Beware of those who write to Richard Wagner’s Götterdämmerung and Die Walküre.«








The parallel reality meant everything to Shus: everything essential; that, which cannot be left out or kept unsaid without distorting the truth of the regular reality. On the contrary, this is exactly what the poet Zagorichnik described as a poetic »non-state« (if at all possible, lyrical). This describes the play in its essence and entirety. What follows, or what aught to follow in subsequent plays (or series) of the system and actions of those who spoil the game, is merely a possible variation on a theme, one of its possible enactments adapted specifically for the readers of the SRP journal. This is because only they will find this play familiar and easily comprehensible. But let us not underestimate other experts in institutions or in parallel transcript non-reality – nor it itself; it hides much, secretly encoding it in a speech, address, new-speech or Newspeak of its own. But it also divulges and says a lot. Parallel reality, which playfully follows actual reality and reveals it, is merely a utility aiding dramaturgic teams to more easily break down and enact or not enact the risqué experiences of the show-offs.

For it potential performance, it would of course be necessary to fundamentally condense and trim the dialogues. The author was unable to do as much; his heart did not allow for it. He can only do this after the he has thoroughly had it with the play, having slept on it sufficiently. However at this point, he usually runs out of the will and enthusiasm to work on it further.

As he sees it, there are only two actors in the game of the parallel reality play. One is an individual with free will and the other a twist of fate. The game is about each individual constantly playing with their destiny, predominately at the expense of their fame; they forsake their freedom, at times avoid it to the benefit of (the determinism of) their role. This is why fate sometimes plays a wicked game with them. Within it, i.e. parallel reality, (essential) events occur simultaneously.

Only through error of transcendence in some strange time-loop can an individual see. If they contemplate it, immerse themselves spiritually enough or imagine it strongly enough, they can foretell what will happen in reality, because it already took place in the parallel reality, or it is doing so in that moment. Any reproach that female roles are neglected in the play, not fatal enough, is superficial. Fate, even when perceived as politics, is female in nature. Formerly, seaman believed that having a female on board would bring certain doom, that »she« is fatal. They had enough reasons to hold such a belief. The jealousy of the strong males, particularly satires, often brought about severe disputes and fights among them – sometimes, in legend of course, entire wars. Today, things are certainly.


Shus’s Theory of Seeing or Foreseeing Games


Before passing to an entirely different reality, I need to spend at least a few words describing Shus’s theory and practice of foreseeing. I must also say, he deemed it very important that it not be mixed up with any theory of clairvoyance or any sort of psychic activity. He believed the latter to be one of Their greatest means of manipulation (which is still quite an unusual position today). He says something along the lines of: They usurped the explanations of the ambiguous and unspecified in the prediction of Man’s and mankind’s future, particularly catastrophes. Let us take, for example, the most notable manipulations with the predictions of Nostradamus. They frequently use, i.e. abuse these with a variety of intentions, to put their scenarios in place. The mass media serve as their intermediaries. They manipulate with tremendous efficiency and are themselves manipulated. Sowing superstition among the crowds, they reap substantial financial gains. What They find most important is the spreading of influence and power; the aim of their manipulation is to arrange and update forecasts and include them in Their world-ruling schemes. Still more often they use said predictions to excuse Their greatest blunders – errors in the great scenario of world history. Yes, sometimes they make grave mistakes wrongly predicting the course of events; then history along with its individual braggart actors or spearheads causes great destruction, much greater than They had anticipated. The same principles are used by smaller regional, local, and institutional notables in power, wielding less though still too much authority and of course by their squires (sycophants) grey eminences. In Shus’s opinion this theory’s greatest weakness was its bias and partiality towards Their interest, which are reserved for the lives of the greats – the noted personalities, who as a result became much greater and more notable than they would actually deserve.

If we now turn to Shus’s theory of prediction it becomes evident that it is much less attractive than the method I just described. It posits that individuals (in approximately nine tenths of their conduct) act in accordance with the determinism of their (social – institutional) role.

Put simpler, they act the way they are expected to act. This is why Shus paid careful attention to the study of institutions’ Value Systems. These are more than just rules governing the playing of parts, laws. To phrase it with a bit more complexity – he studied system’s values upon which laws and other rules or norms of conduct or behaviour are based. The other individual’s choice of moves (approximately one tenth of their particular conduct) is due their leanings or character traits. When Shus erred in predicting an individual’s or group’s actions, it was usually not due to his poor understanding of the braggarts’ character, or and especially, lack thereof. The motivations of their actions are actually incredibly similar; they differ in the mode of execution, but remain within the limits of expected behaviour and in line with their roles. He erred when individuals began to live spontaneously and act in accordance with their own free will. The problem was therefore the smaller parts (rarer inclinations) of spontaneous and therefore unpredictable (or incomprehensible) behaviour. These only occur in rare individuals and even then not very frequently. »It’s a good thing…« he liked to jest – »that so few so rarely make use of this precious gift.« It is, of course, good for those who would predict what is befalling them as precisely as possible; it is even better for those operating, bending, and enslaving them – i.e., ruling them. But in reality, Shus held free will in great esteem; he truly believed it to be man’s best quality, which unfortunately gets used so very rarely. Professor Zweifelgeist would tease him that his theory was derived from the theory of quantum mechanics, but this was not the case. Shus did not come up with the theory, which is over 2000 years old. On the contrary, he most hated the rule of the masses – mob rule, lynching, and mindless pogroms, massacres by mindless armies. And he hated their pimps, their provocateurs even more.

He firmly rejected the simplification that the whole truth is everything, which occurs to him, or everything, which he comes across, as adhered to by Moliere’s Misanthrope. Everything is in its essence everything – only approximately framable through allegory. Just due to the concretization of the abstract is the exemplification carefully selected, because there is nothing more abstract than value systems and nothing more concrete and tangible than their holders and creators: concrete people with names and surnames.

At times, he would publically test his theory. He could only do so by publishing future events when given the chance. In these cases, he took special care to portray events with as little added literary garnish as possible. On one occasion, he described his expulsion from Slovenka (Slovenika’s predecessor) nine months before it happened. To make it even more convincing, he also included how and why it will happen in the APS Bulletin (The Bulletin of the Service for the Agitation and Propaganda of Slovenka) – a booklet entitled (RoR) Research of Researching. He thought it a particularly opportune prediction that no one would read this during this dreary nine-month period, even though the RoR would be right under the noses of those responsible the whole time.

This was no small risk; all manner of things could have happened if one of Them would just use their free will and read the thing. They would certainly have acted differently; in this case not due to the freedom of their will, but so as to not make fools of themselves. And what was written remains, because They do not yet understand or sufficiently grasp the methods of altering reality and history, as described by George Orwell.

»This is not true; it can’t be!« said Shus and scratched his beard with his left hand, in bewilderment when he predicted something particularly well. Shus of course did not keep his theory to himself. He generally disliked secrecy and published it at the first opportunity in form of a sort of manual Then on the Freedom of the Individual and/or Against the Dictate of the Determinism of the Role and Institutional Value Systems. This manual contained almost all his recipes regarding the predictability of the predictable.

As stated, according to him there are only two main players in the game – the individual with free will and the game of fate. The game is played by the individual, who constantly plays with his freedom at the expense of fame and (let us add) power (authority), and gives it up to the benefit of (the determinism of) the role. This is where the games of parallel (non-)realities of the lower order begin, as They insert Themselves between the individual and fate, proclaiming Themselves to be fate, which they are not! Mostly, They act impersonally as an assembly or imaginarily from the background, as »fated policy« (or policy presenting as fate). And so opposing players and game-spoiling individuals necessarily appear, who wish to unmask the masked or false fate at any cost. And They, of course, want to terminate the game-spoilers at any cost in turn. This parallel game, also known in a variant as the Parallel Play (of Administrative or Transcript Para-reality) can be quite dramatic. However, it is more suitable to series format than play format. To explain why this is the case: the Parallel Play’s greatest weakness is that it can have no real end, even its beginning can be set arbitrarily and arbitrarily stretched backwards. It is therefore theoretically endless. In spite of this, or perhaps because of it, this new genre of play is one of cultural propaganda’s greatest inventions; it managed to obsess and pacify addicts, who admire it to an extent unparalleled by any previous play.


In Ljubljana, March 1996.





The Game-spoilers’ Sense of Gratitude and their Lengthy Philosophising

(Still or already aboard the Slovlandia I. flagship) 


Shus: Hey, Franci, listen, where’s Hanzhej?

Zagorchnik: He’s consoling Maras, poor man is completely beside himself. They took him by Wauchar’s boat.

Shus: Yes, that shipwreck was no picnic.

Zagorchnik: Not just the shipwreck, Krokar the poet also chewed him out about how he was portrayed in the SRP journal (On Petko’s dramatics).

Shus: But he only read two words of the whole journal: one – his first name and two – his last name. Well and the paragraph surrounding the two.

Zagorchnik: Well that’s exactly what was too much or wrong. He yelled failing his hands that this is outrageous, how he’d said a long time ago that the journal should be banned. That it’s the most harmful phenomenon of the time in Slonovenia. In short, that it’s a cultural scandal and they’re writing untruths, also about him.

Shus: Too bad.

Zagorchnik: What for?

Shus: That the three of us game-spoilers, two of us stowaways, can’t just waltz onto the flagship.

Zagorchnik: What did you invite us for anyhow, nobody told you to?

Shus: Didn’t it pay off?

Zagorchnik: It is right now, sure.

Shus (grinning like the Cheshire cat): P! P! the last letter in SRP is P for pluck!

Zagorchnik: Enough of this horseplay, tell me: What do you say about all this?

Shus (grows serious, ponders for quite a while and asks): You mean about all this?

Zagorchnik: Well yes, indeed.

Shus the Chronicler: I was always haunted by why Plato ran the poets out of his Republic.

Zagorchnik the Writer: Didn’t my former colleague, editor of the Problemi journal (after me of course) Jasha Zlobensen explain this to you years ago?

Shus the Chronicler: Sure, sure, but…

Zagorchnik: But – what?

Shus: Well, at the time he was a poet and editor of a journal, he even helped us charge the Bastille, and now he is Slonewvenia’s ambassador to Brussels. He loved Latin sayings so much, most of all the one that goes: »Tempora mutantur et nos mutamur in illis«.

Zagorchnik: Once a very insolent hippy in jeans, now a polished diplomat in a tuxedo, and nicely rounded out, a pleasure to behold. But what difference does that make to his reply. A reply is a reply and stays as it was; wasn’t it good enough?

Shus: Yes, sure it was. It’s not the same anymore. The meaning changes retroactively. He changed it himself.

Zagorchnik: Again with your parapsychology, like there’s no time. Everything is now (he corrects him).

Shus: Not mine, Henry’s (H. Bergson) if anybody’s: There’s no time, only duration. Direct facts of the subconscious permeate themselves; that’s all there is to extemporaneous communication, more precisely, to concurrent communication with people outside or out of time. For example, he sees freedom as »fact«, and among the facts we can discern, there are none clearer (surer).

All the issues arising from this problem and the problem itself stem from this… the idea of freedom cannot be said using language, to which it is untranslatable.«

Freedom is unsayable. We can’t gainsay it. If our self denies it in favour of our »us«, it gainsaid it to us. Our »we« is facing the same problem as our self.

And if you will, it’s also by John the Evangelist and a few others I know about (in theory by anyone who truly wants it).

Want it or not, I have to agree with your immense care for the Slovenian language; it’s a truly formidable commodity, trait. But it’s dying out, rare as a drop of water on a hot stove. If only anyone at MIKS (Ministry of Cult-ludism of Slonewvenia) would think like Scharfman did last year, I would rather be out from time rather than outside it.

Zagorchnik (jests): You could work a little harder on your literary Wendish.

Shus: Do you know how hard it is for me? You wouldn’t believe it.

Zagorchnik (purposely skips over the discussion on language, jests): Exactly, your out-of time conversation partners caused quite a bit of fun. You really talk to ‘em?

Shus (grinning again): If I just remember that secretary at Kapucyn’s MITS (Ministry of Truth of Slonewvenia), when I came to negotiate at the Ministry of Subsidising of the Treatise on Freedom. I’ll never forget it. She was in the middle of her lunch, gaged on her sandwich from laughing so hard at me coming in. It was the boss himself saved her from choking (he laughs).

Zagorchnik: What did the minister say?

Shus: The minister? I don’t know, probably that they really don’t have any money for such haberdashery. I never came close to seeing the minister.

Zagorchnik: Who then?

Shus: The secretary of all the ministers at that ministry, Fabrinc, good guy. He yelled at her right there, like she was a puppy. It was the fear that saved her from death by sandwich. We knew each other from the time of Minister Stanyslavski and before, when we clashed with the reds for Ljubljana’s »Bastille of communism«. We chatted a bit, more as a matter of protocol.

Zagorchnik: Serves you right, the way you praised the minister during the war for Slonewvenia.

Shus: But he really was brilliant. I just said it to him, wrote it (he corrects himself).

Zagorchnik: That reminds me, how come he’s not part of this?

Shus: These trench-buddies will never drive together again. One of them will always be somwhere else.

Zagorchnik (again in jest): Exactly, your out-of time conversation partners caused quite a bit of fun. You really talk to ‘em?

Shus: Yoe mean ridicule? You think I didn’t know. I knew already when I attached my list of conversation partners to the back of the Treaty.

Zagorchnik: Are they all there, is nobody missing from the list?

Shus: All of them can never be there, there are less and less of them all the time.

Zagorchnik: When are you talking to them, then?

Shus: When I have nobody else to talk to, and if they’re up for it.

Zagorchnik: In what language?

Shus: No language, its in internal speak (endofasia).

Zagorchnik (incredulously with slight provocation): Get out?

Shus: You read it, you even published the second revised edition. Endofasia is a strange thing. What, how, and why: I establish a dialogue with the living outside time in a congested literary fashion, in my own way. We each have our own.

Zagorchnik (corrects him): With the dead.

Shus: With the living, there are no dead.

Zagorchnik: Yes, yes, there in the beginning everything also was, how does it go? Everything was before there was nothing.

Shus: Joke all you want; read for yourself, if that’s what you want; I also have to, sometimes. Why do you think I keep dragging it with me? Here’s your edition. (With a trace of anger he waves a book in his face, hesitates a bit, unsure if it’s the right time for it; then decides to give him the book anyway): Read. A strange opportunity, but I think this is a good time for it.

Sourgorchnik (reads):

In the beginning there was everything,

and everything was in everything,

and everything was itself Everything.

Everything was itself in itself at the beginning.

Shus: There you go. Here lies the answer to your question. Only, this is not my revelation, it’s the revelation of John! I was just the scribe, today we call it minute-taker, or more refined – the mediator in communication with him.

Zagorchnik: Whom?

Shus: This is where you lay in wait, is it? John the Evangelist, if I can say so.

Zagorchnik: What if a team wrote this Gospel of John of yours collectively?

Shus (surprised): Well noticed. It’s true, they kept interfering in our communication. Sometimes it was a real pain dealing with them. Other times, I debated them as well. Only he really knew what its about.

Zagorchnik: Who’s gonna believe that?

Shus: No need, I don’t want them to believe. Everyone gets it on their own. Live instead of believing it, then you’ll see for yourself, then you’ll be able to feel everything now. But let’s move on.

Zagorchnik: And this wreck (shipwreck), will you write about this too?

Shus: No need, it's written already, I'll just need to remember it as precisely as I can; especially the failures and fouls of the creative protagonists.

Zagorchnik: But if this is how it is, than everything was fixed, what's the game?

Shus: 'Everything' also includes free will, which people don't like. Except the Few who know what they want, or at least think so. Even if it didn't, if events would be predetermined, at least two questions arise: How and why did it happen this way?

There's a difference, a matter of taste (aesthetics) and decency (ethics). When one circles the drain, the end in sight, it matters how they give in and why they give up.

Zagorchnik: Who are They?

Shus: Propagandists, spiritual leaders and pimps agitators, who know damn well what they want. They know, not through forethought but from experience, that they can turn men into apes anytime they want. Just 'cause man-people don't like freedom. They prefer voluntary slavery.

Zagorchnik: And they don't?

Shus: They like having oversight. They insert themselves right in-between fate and freedom, where they can conduct the most beautifully. They aren't free, because they have people above them – i.e. in-between. And so on and on. Wasn't the oldtimer's main mission propaganda – the promotion of »cultourism, cultludism«?

Zagorchnik: And religious, political, peddlers’ agit-propaganda?

Shus: Exactly, only the order is a bit different. This is how you see it, because you dislike them in particular.

Zagorchnik (wouldn't discuss religion, his hair stood on end): Where were we, who were we stuck on again? How does this change things?

Shus: It changes a lot, practically everything. We were stuck on Plato, who ran poets out! From the Republic, from the state.

Zagorchnik: What, all poets?

Shus: Not all of them, he was a poet himself, even though he counted himself a philosopher. He only cast out those who were just playing poet, and those who lied... (pause) that they speak the truth, that they are (in)dividual.

Zagorchnik: Who did he leave there, those who counted themselves poets, who played real poets, did they count as poets at all?

Shus: Some so much that they fell for their own rouse. Others put themselves forward to the lie of power with such fawning it was hard to watch. Keep struggling, it’s simple which is why it is not easy to see. It pained me for years.

Zagorchnik: Now you finally figured it out.

Shus: I didn’t at all, they told me themselves, one after the other.

Zagorchnik: Come on, what are you saying, not face-to-face?

Shus: Not face to anything; they told me in their actions. There is no one-fits-all answer.

Zagorchnik (stops making fun, his interest is beginning to be piqued in earnest, he listens in silence.)

Shus (continues in a slightly witty tone, a sign things are getting serious):

Politicians lent themselves, took themselves back; now they feel the call of conscience or homeland or the devil himself to lend themselves again. Just look at those in SAN – Kosich, Dzhavoski, and friends. It’s just clearer what needs doing: set the riffraff on the carnage of war for a grand cause only grand in their minds.

Zagorchnik (cuts him off): Then the tally hasn’t been settled yet. And you remind them, you keep reminding them, that they were borrowed by politics, then un-borrowed – that is driven out where they belong.

Shus: Now you’re getting close. Let me finish: they failed politics, politics failed them but they can’t bear to be without it; they can be without poetry and writing anytime. Look at them, together we fought for freedom of thought and writing, not just babbling, and now They are our worst persecutors. They thwart journals, hate free thought, despise free sailing. This equilibration from Antigone to Creon and back and a bit across makes me sick, particularly because the sea is dead and I have work below deck. (He doesn’t let himself be cut off.) I’m almost done. Today, Plato wouldn’t just cast out lying poets, he would cast out those who say that for them poetry isn’t a way to power while they serve it: its fame, power! You can’t overlook or fail to see – not outwardly even less inwardly. Isn’t it simple?

Zagorchnik: Couldn’t be simpler; but everyone know this.

Shus: Could well be, but they pretend they don’t see it. At least not in themselves their friends and comrades, and in those esteemed, respected, acknowledged and awarded, or those with concrete names and surnames, especially the latter. They are in power, in its key positions and say they have no ties to it. His party wanted him to be leader and he said it has nothing to do with him that he doesn’t know anything about it. Could well be, but how come they didn’t know it?

Zagorchnik: Like the man who said to his psychiatric doctor: »Doctor, I know that I am not a grain of wheat, I’m just not sure the chicken knows it too.

Shus: The same thing went down with Petko’s head and the Rebel party.

Zagorchnik: What would you do about them, if you were in his place? Wouldn’t you run them out, if you could?

Shus: No, I’m sure I could never do it. I’d never want power like that.

Zagorchnik: Let’s say you had it anyway. Like you say – imagine it hypothetically.

Shus: Then I’m sure, I’d strip them of their command of old-timers. I’d depose them in time, before they could screw up and we all got soaked. Let them write and compose whatever they want! Let Him stop foaming and driveling! A poet in power is a mightily dangerous creature (especially to poets who aren’t at his side).

Zagorchnik: See, and you’re surprised when they want to abolish and annihilate us.

Shus: But I don’t want it, not even hypothetically. Surely we won’t let ourselves be abolished by every tyrant just because we don’t want power? Always the same, because they’re all the same.

Zagorchnik: Do you think anyone will believe this? Just to be safe, so you don’t change your mind. If anyone even heard you, it would be too much.

Shus: Well they could’ve let us breathe a bit, the stinky air.

Zagorchnik: Ok, they aren’t stopping us. They’re just dragging us into their game.

Shus: They just don’t get that there can be parallel writers that don’t want power, happy if they can think and write in their own way. And if they actually know this, they pretend it’s just a weakness of the feeble.

Zagorchnik: Aesop’s tale – the fox realized it can’t get to the grapes and decided that they’re sour anyway.

Shus: And the rationalisation by that Freud guy who caused more damage with this than all that Libido malarkey. Anyway…

Zagorchnik (with some curiosity): Anyway?

Shus the Chronicler: Let ‘em go where they want to go, each to their own. Travellers accompanying their leaders, pimps, agitators to the mighty, propagandists to people with coin. But they still have to be unmasked, revealed, dissasembled, bared, scattered,…

Zagorchnik (jumps in): In short – crucified, lynched, or at least spat at?

Shus: Hell no, don’t fall for it, that’s how They describe it: Criticism yes, lynch no. And they sing songs of reconciliation and non-hate against reprisal and that, and they appear convincing to the outside observer to boot. Actually, they’re poets – or poets above poets; they mounted Pegasus and rode to court. Pegasus itself changed (transformed) into a battle stallion. So they’re dangerous as hell.

Zagorchnik (alluding to Shus’s latest debate with Orwell): In short, court scribes with squires in battle gear, and we with beasts of burden. »I will work harder« said Boxer and stomped his hoofs on the floor. Meanwhile, the clover withered of sadness as they honoured the worker with a wreathed monument posthumously.«

Shus: Yes, in a nutshell, but not in short. What you just said wasn’t very short, was it. You can almost never say very much in short. You can’t say epigrams are verses of wisdom. Don’t fall for it, when they say: »Too many notes, too many letters.« Go after them properly, with names and surnames!

Zagorchnik the Writer: To each their own. (It was clear that this debate would not end well, or probably at all. To calm him down a bit he changed the subject): Why are you getting all flustered? What brand do you smoke?

Shus had a similar thought; for a bit they were almost on the same wavelength. He would peer melancholically into a brand new comely cigarette box: OK, I used to smoke a pipe – a peace pipe, with indulgence. Now (he reads):



ultra slim,


New York, London, Paris.

these are missing: Berlin,

Vienna, Budapest, Roma,

and of course Pirano.


Zagorchnik (added a tad triumphantly): Didn’t you bring me that second edition of the Revelation in Wordstar format?

Shus: It's in MS Word now.

The crew of the Slonewvenian navy's special Maris brigade, the guests of the Atlantis Pact and castaways are all watching CMN TV together. The Atlanta Olympic Games were on and Slowland (a new name for Slonewvenia, which was increasingly coming into general use) was represented and promoted by the best athletes our money could buy.

Al the main protagonists assembled in the exclusive viewing box, the Ship Godfathers: Joseph Kavel, Jonni Davos and dog Artur, Janez Dolinski (also Mirandolski) and President Küchanosh himself with his wife Stephy. Petrini Svetokrishki and Wauchar Polihitsky weren’t missing either.

They were snacking on hamburgers, drinking Coca-Cola with added coca.

They were discussing profoundly important matters, they were developing a script for a play that would be put on via two satellites for all living Slonewends (of the United Slowland) as well as for the North-Atlantic and Eurasian public. The lead promotional tourist mission will be assumed by Slovenika 1 and 3 (rebuilt from the sunken Slovenika and Kornpop I-II. The play was a communal effort – that is written together, i.e. unanimously. It was titled: The Path to Yurope.

Zagorchnik the Writer (a specialist also for Wendish or Slonewspeak or Slowspeak and of course Oldspeak as well also used living languages in his vibrant life. He provocatively asked Shus the Chronicler): What do you say now, Chronicler? What do you say about this?

Shus the Chronicler: You’re not trying to say I’m surprised? I’m not even sad. What I’m saying is that they won’t succeed.

Zagorchnik: Oh dial the shit down a bit. That’s all.

Shus the Chronicler: Too late! Germanisation from the north, Romanisation (Guinneasation) from the west, Hun(gar)isation from the east. See that crusader on the horizon? Tit Brionski the II even blocked your access to the open sea.

Zagorchnik: See, not only are we going to Yourope, it is making the effort to get here.

Shus the Chronicler: Especially with the Jugo (north-eastern wind on the Adriatic).

Zagorchnik: Just for what is it too late here?

Shus the Chronicler: Uncle Sam is beating them to it, with the Oceania Fleet both from the left and right side and from the stern (with the Jugo wind).

Zagorchnik: Could it be you’re exaggerating a little?

Shus the Chronicler: Not in the least. If I did I would still tell the people who are tackling Italian in the textile factory, German in the tobacco plant, or love-saleswomen and waiters trying to speak Hungarian to teach the managers the Uncle’s language in stead.

Zagorchnik: And the American Way of Life.

Shus angrily threw the empty Coke bottle into the sea and noted: We already know how to do that. We just need some money – Sam’s capital.

Zagorchnik: I’m sure we’ll get some, more than we need for sure.

Shus: It all began in Atlanta.

(»We know,

the pen is mightier than the sword,

but Coca-Cola

is stronger than everything else.«

Zagorchnik added: Yes, yes, little Kiku the Bushman knew why he had to take this damn Coke bottle and the spirit living in it to the end of the world.

Shus: OK, OK.

Shus (further adds): But we’re still gonna have to discuss that part about the language some day. The literary language is not a living language of a nation, it’s the construct of its institutions; it’s vulnerable and subjected to autocracy and power, especially in Slonewspeak.

Zagorchnik (fed up, he was tired): Another time, then.



Author’s note: Another time came precisely a year later. Only, they didn’t argue over literary language, but something more significant. According to Shus’s one-sided explanation things were like he described them in P.R. (Parallel Reality). He temporarily and probably forever gave up finishing the Games of the System without Borders or End. Oldtajmer (or Oldtimer) – The Happy Barge Slovenika was adapted for TV as a six-part series (The Series of the SRP Journal or the Nuisance of Game-spoiler), which is again not what it is, because it can also exist in the abhorred or also naval SRP journal. As stated above, the series (with the exception of the first – commencing part) was never finished and probably never will be. More and more, and ever more frequently (he felt) fate would intervene (fate perceived as politics) so that something always intervened. With intervening occurrences Shus grew weary of any further writing of sad comedies in poor adaptations. He particularly loathed stringing a series to the theme of From Here to Eternity and Back or stepping or descending to Rhodos (solid ground). Suddenly it seemed so insignificant…

But as a chronicler he was unable to help himself, he would still occasionally record events or stories he thought significant, of course only if he thought them important.











(The Spell of Captain Petko or a Cockfight between two Game-Spoilers)


Set: The SRP editing office (Opera bar on Cankarjeva 12). The bar is nearly empty, Shus is sipping on his quarter-pint of beer as Zagorchnik enters the scene in the Opera bar (i.e. editing office).

Zagorchnik: Hi Shus, here you go, recensions of Chankar’s book, Mladina’s article naming it book of the year, and last but not least, the bibliography of the Funds Ory Pal and Gozd to which a part of the SRP journal also belongs.

Chronicler Shus nervously tugs on his beard and leafs through the sizeable pile of titles such as: Best Books of 1996; Interesting Discovery in the Dialect of Written Poetry, Vital Klabus; Rural Nightingale, Jozhek Shtucin; Striptease. Instead of Kim Basinger, Franci Zagorchnik; (again) Striptease. instead of Kim Basinger, Mihael Bergant. Shus get’s the feeling trouble is afoot.

Shus (asks carefully): No doubt about it, truly impressive, fascinating efforts. Another famous poet, Zagorchnik’s discovery, gets a sip of transient earthly fame. But why bring it to me? »Your poet to Slonewvenians a new wreath weaves.«

Zagorchnik (officially): I am putting all of this forth as an expressions of the literary reception of my editorial work vis-a-vis your extra-literary decisions concerning the work of poetry at hand, which you first rejected, and later decided to stay out of the literary editing decisions at SRP (i.e. my ‘Concept of Editorial Manipulation’ - Koncept urednishke manipulacije – 8. Pontsko pismo, introductory note of the first issue of SRP, Ocober 1993).

Shus: Hanzhej Lumski is the managing editor, only he can reject a contribution, which he did both in the previous issue and this one (SRP 21/22). And above him a majority of the editorial board (i.e. editors) decides if an author or their representative invokes it. You won’t get my vote for the publication of Chankar's Anecdote on Jesuses, and I told you why not. Must I tell you again? ...

Firstly the devaluation of values and nihilism don’t mix with the SRP journal’s value system, and I also don’t support these types of poetic provocations.

Zagorchnik: such lack of comprehension of the arts. You completely missed the point that it’s about reality »in place of some art« It’s a striptease, the disclosing of hypocrisy, which in addition to the popular sense also mentions in a poetic context the baring, uncovering of absolute truth, honest confession or spiritual striptease.

Shus: Why don’t you explain, so I can grasp it at least a little bit?

Zagorchnik: Just face it, it’s really about »baring« and »absolute truth« of our mortality and manners of death. It is also the truth of our speech and writing, the truth of the living language, for which we know is growing ever more endangered.

Shus: Sullied by newspeak. But this is not the topic of our conversation. Come on; tell me (explain) an anecdote in your own words, for example the one about Jesus’s fairness.

Zagorchnik: You really don’t understand at all. It’s not about explaining. Everyone can interpret it for themselves. I am not an interpreter.

Shus: I’m afraid you are; you and your kind appraise, promote, and also rank poets.

Zagorchnik: Who do you have in mind?

Shus: You and the other authors you assembled in this pile, weighing me down with their judgment.

Zagorchnik: Do you doubt their assessments?

Shus: It’s not about that. I have my own view of this poetry. That is the most deciding factor for me, for my attitude towards it.

Zagorchnik: Which is?

Shus (pausing slightly): Which is, that it upsets me personally. I abhor it.

Zagorchnik: I see; why is that?

Shus: As you know, I make daily visits to the Tabor old people’s home. On nice days I go to the park with birds and old people on benches, and my mother Ema. And there are birds and flowers and wind and the ether, and old people in cages, slouched and waiting to be set free. Some have faith, some hope, and some have nothing at all.

Zagorchnik (sarcastically): Some with truth, some with freedom and some with love, and fear, and courage.

Shus (very seriously): Don’t forget those who put it off at any price, following house rules and the teachings of modern medicine; and those, who detest others for having their own personal views. Now imagine me going to the park, sitting on a bench, or better still, climbing a stone table and reciting, for example, just the hard-line Chankar motto: »Religion: This summer smells of birds, and the birds of cages. And old people sit on a bench and smell birds. This is your religion!«

Zagorchnik: So, you perceive Chankar’s hard-line poetry completely personally? You ruminated on it in endofasia.

Shus: How could I comprehend it better?

Zagorchnik: But you forget that your endofasia (internal discussion) crosses from the field of creativity including poetry to political practice. First by stepping down as managing editor of a journal and then through editorial acting in the name of your literalised value system of »liberty, verity, love«, which you even composed in poetic, that is decidedly aesthetic, form, as a work of verbal art and not as a system of conducting (yourself or others) and authority.

Shus: It appears we’ll never be on the same page about this. For me endofasia is the right, or at least deeper reason to write; and poetry, if that is what you call this particular doing, is merely a mode of expression, making it easier to say some things, think them through even, express to oneself. If it is to mean something to others then it is probably right that it is published. And if not, then not, perhaps another time, and by someone else. But I am not setting this understanding of values as a norm for others. Anthologies and encyclopaedias and works of the year and particularly a poet’s fame are beside the point for me, quite bothersome, though unavoidably present, inevitable. I was once a sociologist of culture after all. It would be hard for me not to see the sense of singing praises to the system – its control of those yearning for fame. I find your compliments superfluous.

Zagorchnik (slightly threatening, almost angry): You forget you already caused damage, even moral damage! And if you step down as »literary« editor, don’t forget you should fix the damage yourself, not pass the burden on to other editors.

Shus (angrily): I’m not passing anything to them or taking anything from them!

Zagorchnik: When I was chief-, then managing- and finally a mere co-editor, I never thought of myself as just a literary editor. The same should go, at least in principle, for all other editors.

Shus: That’s the second time.

Zagorchnik: What second time?

Shus: The second time you’re using »should«. It’s a mark of the detractive values of the system, institutions.

Zagorchnik: I’m not saying it can’t be different, but editors of SRP are not assigned fields, neither in principle nor for appearances. The same goes for you. Particularly, as you already pressured literature, even if merely a journal editor and in an extra-literary way, as censor in the name of your own literary system, which transformed from the sphere of creative thinking to the sieve of the authority.

Shus: Hard words, truly harsh accusations. Whom did I censure, on whom did I impose my system of values, which is, by the way, not a system. I am also not forcing my values on anyone, let alone imposing their rule; I value individual value orientation, I place distinctiveness of the individual against institutional values of the system; particularly those declared, proclaimed – false. I have no interest in power at all, I am not even fascinated by it. I don’t want to be a sieve of power. Get the majority of the editorial board to publish Chankar’s poetry, and it will get published in the SRP Journal. But I repeat, don’t expect my vote.

Zagorchnik: You know full well that I can’t get a majority without your vote. The sieve of power is yours, isn’t it now?

Shus: Listen to me now. I am not voting to publish Chankar’s poem ‘Anecdote on Jesuses’. Although it’s none of my business, I’m still wondering why you’re so forcefully trying to get him into SRP, where he doesn’t fit at all, while he goes nicely with the much wider, nihilist (values) of the New Atlantis and the Forest or your Oberkrainverbund.

Zagorchnik: Just you leave New Atlantis alone, it’s none of your business, nor is the autonomous Oberkrainverbund.

Shus: You’re absolutely right, I went too far; it’s realy not my business. Still, I never vetoed the publication of Chankar’s Anecdotes on Jesuses; and if I had the power you claim I have, I could have. Meanwhile, you vetoed my ‘Oldtimer – Happy Barge Slovenika’ play in SRP 15/16, almost exactly a year ago. And I didn’t get bent out of shape or made a big deal about it.

Zangerichnik: It wasn’t even finished.

Shus: Don’t make excuses, it was finished, and concluded. Twice. The second time, because someone put me off it.

Zangerichnik: Who? What do you mean?

Shus: The series was actually not fully finished, but I never meant to publish the whole thing. The play would’ve been enough, maybe even to much for Cpt. Petko.

I would leave the selection of parts or excerpts to the editorial board. And then I would publish the entirety to be ‘documented’ in the POGUM (Spirit) supplement. And I’m in no rush whatsoever. It’s true though, that it’s my own fault. This always happens if you let the uninitiated in to early.

Sourgorichnik (visibly enjoying his power almost disdainfully serves the final blow): What was, was. The Carnivalisation in the case of the dramatic text about SRP (Sailing Released but Poorly, or whatever it is?) goes against my – as I imagine it – serious work or collaboration. But, as I said; what was, was. But now, after your endofasia, the passing of a genre from literary fiction to tangible editorial reality, I’ve had enough. I simply insist on all further indisputability of given editorial reality and its autonomy in this field. I won’t think about what’s on the other side of the alternative, as that would be against (my) non-discussibility.

Shus (hurt): You mean autocracy, literary tyranny, your personal legitimacy. Don’t you see it in yourself?

Zagorchnik (ignores this and continues): This is exactly what would induce unnecessary dialogue – ‘dialoguesing’ i.e. the establishment of a genre in which I want no part or to be exploited and dragged somwhere I don’t feel like being.

Shus: Unnecessary dialogue, you say?

Zagorchnik: And of course this would have consequences, which would stop the very collaboration that is based on spontaneity.

Shus: Just the opposite; dialogue opens the door to spontaneity and shuts it on your despotism. The subject of our present dialogue are greatly pertinent matters (»values« - he corrects himself) to our coexistence.

Zagorchnik: You are missing the point again. The way you understand it is that I am striving for a strict duality of the journal, that I view literature as separate from other parts of the journal. In fact, I am sooner striving to overcome its two-part make-up both in content and form – editing each individual issue. It’s visual-arts part, pictures and comics play a role as well. And if I am separating literary fiction from the other realities of the journal, I am thinking about the journal’s multi-disciplinary character and that sometimes certain things really shouldn’t be mixed.

Shus: No, what I understood was that you are striving towards authoritative decision-making at the journal. You purge literature and aesthetics of all but pure fiction, invention, and most of all truth.

Zagorchnik: If you don’t understand, let mew rephrase; in short – I do not condone the »carnivalisation« of my work – collaboration (he corrects himself). I already mentioned the necessary respect for my work as editor.

Shus: Don’t you think you are overusing this possessive pronoun – »my«?

Zagorchnik: I simply wouldn't dedicate my life to just anything. It's probably in my nature, a sort of discipline I've been submitting myself to from the very beginning. I was born old.

Shus: Well, this is another difference between us, I’m childish even in my old age.

Zagorchnik: Enough joking. This here is real poetry. Book of the year – Do you know what that means?

Shus (even more nervously, visibly annoyed perhaps even repulsed, leafs through Chankar's hard-line poetry): I say again, you have to get five »yeses«, that is the majority of editors, and the thing will get published.

Zagorchnik (incredulously): And you'll just stand by and look?

Shus: It would be premature to say how I'd look on it, because I don't know yet – or at least I'm not sure – and also you'd triumphantly say »looky here, an attempt to influence the editors.« Though, isn't every editor answerable for their decisions to themselves only? We are autonomous individuals, aren't we?

Zagorchnik (firmly): As editor, I have no intention to turn into a negotiator and create fractions within the journal, pull anyone in or fight against anyone else. And so, I'm irrevocably stepping down. This is also something I won't negotiate about.

Shus (visibly fed up): Oh, come on!

Zagorchnik: No need to tell me what to do with this statement. I am giving it to you, and you know what it means, don't you?

Shus: Not entirely.

Zagorchnik: No need to burden the other editors with this, or the President of the Republic Küchanosh.

Shus (inhales deeply, i.e. orders another beer): This will not fly. Editors must be informed in writing if a colleague is irrevocable stepping down; in cases when this is a contributing editor it must be done by written clarification of their irrevocable withdrawal. I don't know what Küchanosh has to do with all this, though?

Zagorchnik: You and Hanzhej Lumski shoved the Regulation on Printed Publications in my face as proof that my publishing house cannot be a co-publisher of the SRP Journal, which it had been ever since it was founded.

Shus (takes a long sip): Of that's what it's about. According to the new Regulation on Printed Publications, which was signed by President Küchanosh himself, all chief and managing editors were stripped of the functions of chief and managing editors, including Tito Dedalski – if you want an example. The period of adapting or transition to the new regulation was two years, and we were actually a bit late. Afterwards, you could only be managing editor, which you refused at the editorial meeting at Opera Bar.

Zagorchnik (cuts in): I find it simply puerile and untenable to be managing editor of two journals. I accepted it as a temporary situation, under constant protest.

Shus: It wouldn't be puerile or unfair if you were chief editor of both journals.

Zagorchnik: For me, being the co-founder of the journal is enough and no one can take it away from me, whether it's written down somewhere or not. So it doesn't need to exist in writing.

Shus: And no one is denying this. Nobody is pushing you out of the editorial board either; we can continue to collaborate.

Zagorchnik: We can, under my conditions.

Shus: Go on.

Zagorchnk: Chankar recieves his rightful space in this issue (21/22). My editorial work will be non-discussible.

Shus: No chance, you can tell them there’s no place in our journal of romantic sea-voyage for a One and Only, even Adolf Zagorchnik himself. We don’t accept non-discussibility. In any case, I can’t believe you have such a problem with the Order of the President. President Küchanosh signs and decrees in the Official Gazette all public and secret laws including those about the rearing of small animals, this is written in the Constitution of Slonewvenia. It shouldn’t be taken personally, being that this here (in the official gazette and page 1 of SRP) is obviously about the game of the system’s institutional roles. Your co-publication, as you know full well, was a matter of our kindness and tolerance for you peculiarities rather than actual co-publishing. Furthermore, we found out there is no such thing as the Funds of Ory Pál and Forest, to which you are consigning a part of the SRP Journal. At least at that time they didn’t even have a bank account. On page one in the colophon of the SRP Journal we want to stick to the letter of the law, or else they’ll say we don’t officially exist, when we apply for funding with MIKS. It’s true that it didn’t help us very much so far, still one page in a Journal adhering to the letter of the law is not such a terrible thing. After all, there are two hundred pages left for poetic licence. Still, you’re so unyieldingly poetic on page one, that your creativity in the colophon always gave me proper headaches. First it was Ory Pál Funds then Forest (Foreign Establishment), then Atelier Otilijia etc., now Bela Collection in the Bibliography. SRP’s only publisher is Lumi ltd. with an official address and bank account. It’s all dry, official, and not poetic at all. And SRP is not one of two journals also published by Zagorichniki, and it never was.

Zagorchnik: And don’t forget the RTVL/Slo Service for Programming Research.

Shus: No, I didn’t forget. It was only in the colophon of the first issue of the journal, when we were rightfully expecting to be co-founded by RTVL/S. Now it’s at the very end, in the »poem« about the Distinctiveness of the SRP Journal: »This is the intent of the editorial board of the SRP Journal, a continuation of the SSP’s (Service for the Study of RTVL’s Programming) Bulletin, which was cancelled in 1983.« This was and remains the value orientation of the journal from its foundation until today. However, value orientation is not a legal norm. I presume that you, being a SRP contributor, are clear on the difference between value orientations and the dictate of institutional norms. You’re just pretending you’re not.

Zagorchnik: Everyting was fine until you got spooked by Slonewvenian President Küchanosh's Regulation on Printed Publication. This incurred your forgetfulness. But don’t worry, everything is in keeping with orders, which I’m not really too interested in, as you know. And you can imagine, if I tell you we dispensed with such waving of orders thirty years ago and we didn’t let ourselves be self/intimidated. This was what actually made it possible for art to be deemed as the opposition to the regime at all.

Shus: You think it wasn’t allowed, even cultivated both as opposition to art and culture of the regime?

And also, I’m not entirely sure you dispensed with it completely.

Zagorchnik: It’s true that a part of it was positioned in power. It’s the same way today. We have two poetic (republics) »states« one – mostly epic, which is in power, and the other poetic »non-state«, mostly lyrical, that is perhaps still becoming, but is certainly not penalized in advance and sentenced to some lyrical power. As such, it would be disbanded in advance and it isn’t power-mongering; it is already anarchic due to those in power.

Shus: Anarchic maybe, but tied to power, authority. Whether it’s about a lyrical or epic work, parade horses, or state-forming poets is not really vital here. Still, your description of the lyrical non-state was so beautiful that it would be a shame if you didn’t write it down, if you won’t, I’ll do it for you, or for posterity. We find ourselves at Plato again, who ran poets out of the Republic. More concretely we’re at Kulturbund – Oberkrein and New Atlantis, and Emil Milan Marie of Loka, the shadow prime minister (of the »poetic state«), who has and will install poets as editors in the »poetic non-state«.

Zagorchnik: What’s wrong with that?

Shus: Only, that they didn’t install themselves, being that we had self-management.

Zagorchnik: I went to him myself and told him I wanted my own journal. Did I install myself or didn’t I?

Shus: You didn’t, he did. They did. You just caught yourself on their hook, which is called inflated ego. Are you still dangling from their line (of the »Fishermen of Human Souls«), Haven’t you freed yourself yet?

Zagorchnik: For sure, I edited according to my concept of editing manipulation.

Shus: In a poetic »non-state«.

Zagorchnik: Don’t be like that, not in that tone. As you saw, I don’t avoid any sweeping. My co-founding of the journal is also in the past for me.

Shus: And now you’ll put on a nice act of an offended and hurt, played, deposed man, and all will be beautiful.

Replace a cleanse (catharsis) with a purge, and that’s it.

Zagorchnik: Come on don’t be afraid. Everything is beautifully arranged, both at the level of the journal and state.

Shus: But not on the individual level; it isn’t between us.


Zagorchnik (ignores him and recites a pre-prepared quote): So we find ourselves on a new stage of eternity. There is no past and no more present. There is only beautiful future. And that is as it should be. After its long insufferable absence, the beautiful future is on the horizon again; let it shine beautifully. The more beautifully it shines, the less need we will have for the past and also present. In time, these two categories of time can disappear from eternity. Farewell, greetings from the New Former Managing Editor Sourgorichnik.

(Zagorchnik victoriously exits.)

Shus (angrily to himself): So that’s how it is. He conducted the debate to a pre-prepared scenario, and I had no idea. And when he realized it won’t go for it twice, he wasn’t even offended but actually relieved. My jaw dropped, I was dumbfounded. What an arduous disputable discussion; I thought, I flattered myself, that I was leading it. And what an exit, he closed by throwing one of my favourite out-of-time conversation partners in my face and then went and just left.

Chronicler Shus (offended, visibly hurt murmurs to himself): No, this can’t end like this, or I am no chronicler.

»A truly peculiar company« (Shus commented to himself), »yet we collaborate, quite freely and even spontaneously. But some minimal institutionalization is still necessary, it’s unavoidable.«

(For now Shus had no better idea than to immerse himself in endofasia once more, the very thing that was so annoying to Zagorchnik.)

Author’s comment or note: Other unavoidable spoilers of the game in the SRP circle were missing the meeting again: Managing Editor Hanzej Lumski was at a sociological symposium in Portoroso (holding a visibly noticed paper on the facts of social re-stratification, orally of course, he even commanded interest at the Cabinet of President Küchanosh himself, but there’s a slight concern they wouldn’t be overly thrilled to read it in the journal. But he’s late with his submission again); the withheld and expelled emigrant writer Löwen Detel (also Löwenmut) was a corresponding member anyway and didn’t attend meetings; he was also very busy preparing Kocbek’s book – for the foreign audience of course (the expelled writer is still not ‘withheld’ enough at home in his native land; in accordance with Their – Slonewendian wise men(gnates)’ opinion he had to stay abroad, just because they are infallible); the engraver and archaeochronos Juraj Demitrov, who had so much work computer-scanning texts and images as well as designing the journal, that he worked through nights (we called the engraver ‘archaeochronos’, because he archaeved (archived) the journal and kept and disseminated it through time, i.e. to potential future audiences, who will not focus merely on its marketability), deonthologist Dubl M. Fegoshy, who was abumlatingly – this time hobblingly ironing out a new interview (he could only do it walking, rambling around; he will find a deonthologist bomber on the street or in a park or hospital. He gained fame through blowing up or scares he caused in the dependent Non-Archetincture journal.

For a small country like Slonewvenia, he was able to dig up an incredibly great number of non-persons, i.e. personalities, who were timely and thoroughly denied by the important Slonewvenians in the name and for the benefit of all others. At one of his creative hikes, he took such an unfortunate fall that he fractured his hip); free author Ant Ivich actually made it but was very late, he had been watching tele-vision and jutting down the accomplishments for TV notepads, and he hadn’t quite finished coining the final epigrams (generally, he was very dedicated to Slonewvenian graphic novels, and he had to make a living somehow; who could blame him, even if free artists need very little to survive); eminent critic Maras Kremplgauner (Kernmauer) based his collaboration on the single mandatory condition that he never, but truly never ever, be called to a meeting (he was entirely fed up with them, but he did promise to pay the free contribution); the only defender of the constitution (of the const(op)itutional court) Misha Krovic was hard at work the entire night before and the previous one and the one before that, writing a separate opinion. To call him in for meetings for such matters would be truly inappropriate; he will visit the non-president, i.e. defender of the constitution in his home on Sav. (They called him Non-president, due to the fact that he would be president in Samo’s Empire and Carantania but not in Sloneveina or Slonewendia because he was too principled or too distinct); expelled Atlantian (or Atlantian in exile) Andreas Luman, disliked meetings at inns or bars, he preferred corresponding with friends of both genders (they’ve had it with only receiving advertising and propaganda of all sorts in their mailboxes in the morning when the day starts, so they opted to exchange poetry and short prose instead, something living and personal). Shus was moved when he thought about the golden age of Mesing-bar, who unloaded boxes and sold bicycles and tube patches in Vôlanverkaf Blue along with valve rubber tubing that was always too short and bicycle pumps that were returned by women saying they got too hot during pumping. He was tired, sure, but beer tasted better to him then than now.

Important co-conspirators, or to put it better, co-supporters of the game-spoilers: romantic printer Vitalus Div, scenography painter Jovani Spacolini and everyone who took at least two runs on the slippery scene of parallel reality never took part in these games of the circle or their like; or they did only when there was something concrete on the agenda (some tangible business) for them.

All other contributing collaborators from the circle of the hated journal kept clear of the editing office, i.e. Opera Bar, most out of fear they would be roped into the editorial board immediately; it’s true though, that some did so because they couldn’t tolerate cigarette smoke or alcohol fumes and general bustle of the bar.



Note: An Endofasian epilogue follows: To Rhodos; Back to Ordinary Reality, which is summarized in the contribution titled 'On Values (of) Things' [O vrednotah (v) stvareh.].


Ljubljana, October 1997


Translated from Slovenian by Jaka Jarc 









Concerning the nation from metareality – facts stemming directly from consciousness


»A correct notion (said Diotima to Socrates),

as you well know, is not based on evidence and therefore cannot be cognisance, for how could something that has not been proven be cognisance, and neither is it incognisance, for how could something that determines the truth be incognisance? It is therefore clear that a correct notion is somewhere halfway between cognisance and incognisance.«




Shus’s conversations with some men outside the frame of time: Socrates, Henri, Étienne, ... Others (in the background): Diotima, Niccolo, Ivan, Homer and others

(The present, ten and fifteen years later, and anyway time is of no importance here)



One would say nowadays that the truth about the nation and the nationality of a nation, which is what we are dealing with in this case, is still as far as untruth. The system of hypotheses and assumptions in terms of values is the one which shifts our notions of the nation from a kind of middle point between cognisance and incognisance, to the edge of cognisance or incognisance. We can see this shift more easily as the pure truth or a pure lie.


If the truth about the nation is a value, whose opposite is an untruth, then it is somewhere between the two, never entirely in the middle, »a correct notion«.


Nowadays, this notion is leaning heavily, it is moving away from the middle to the truth of those who pass it on to the masses, who shape it for them. These are strong media nowadays – media of strength. The media’s criteria of truth or the truth of the media for the masses is very far, further and further from the true notion and the truth.


So what in your opinion is the truth about your nation, or at least a correct idea about it. But tell me as briefly as you can.


My nation is dying. It is disappearing from the stage.


All nations die once, just like people. Not one of them is immortal, the great and famous just as the small ones who are hardly noticed by history. That which remains in eternity is their uniqueness, the soul of the nation or its free – liberated – soul.


And that is precisely what is hurting me. The soul of the nation is rotting; its free soul is evaporating. It is voluntarily giving itself up to slavery, it is yearning for it. Just as Étienne said.


If the death of your nation is such, then it is not honourable. But let me warn you against despondency in the face of what is perhaps your nation’s final trial, for from it stems hatred for logos and the exploration of reason, similar to hatred for people: both stem from disappointment.


Thank you Socrates for your wise counsel. What can I do...?


Hypotheses therefore!


(Shus first tried to find some excuses: »They are executed from my endophasal understanding of the subject following the interference of Henri Bergson, or with his help. So we have written down an opinion, a reflection, meditation, as you wish.« And then ...):

O Henri ... If only you would help me in my ignorance...


You demand judgement?


Perhaps not literally judgement, perhaps an opinion. I yearn terribly for conversation. But I am convinced that everyone who truly desires it has the right to a judgement.


Is that all, are you convinced?


I am no longer entirely convinced. We keep persuading each other. We are persuading others, ourselves, other people persuade us. In the end there are many people who are convinced, who are stuck in their beliefs and we cannot exit this thick fog.


So you are not free.


We are sometimes. Perhaps occasionally.


There are no occasions, there is only duration. It stretches into eternity, it is eternal.


Then true time is elongated and synchronous at the same time, as eternal and timeless as we ourselves want it to be. Would it therefore suffice if we only scoured through the facts of consciousness, if we cleansed them in themselves, if we kept on glorifying them? For we do that sometimes...


Even schematics and exertion will not help a great deal. It is a question of direct facts, is it not? And they are not so simple that they may fit into any kind of definition. Simply to understand them is not possible, and it is absurd. To live them, experience them, that is something else. But let us leave that for now. You need me to fulfil the task that Socrates set you, don’t you?


To put forward hypotheses as correctly as possible, I always found that hard, harder than verifying them.


They are verified by others. You are not free to accept or decline judgements.


In what am I therefore free?


When you were choosing an arbiter you were free, but you cannot alter his judgement, nor can you reject it. You are reckless, impatient, with this demand for a judgement. You cannot conceal anything from me. Do you really think that I do not know that you dealt with my »Essay on the Immediate Data of Consciousness« or the »Discussion on the immortality of the soul«, as you allude to it in your »Treatise on Freedom«? Perhaps you think that I do not know that you would have rejected it with contempt had you not accidentally opened it on page 102 in Feliks’s translation?


I am sorry, Henri. Therefore, you also know that I had tears in my eyes when I read your claim that freedom cannot be defined precisely because we are free. I found myself ridiculous at the thought that I could have tears in my eyes when I read the dry paragraph of the treatise, for it is not a novel. And I am not the weepy type, yet this is the first time it happened.


It is only for this reason that we are now able to talk. And perhaps also because you lost your passion for fishing. The bleak, when you hit it on the head, cries out like a baby, and when you hear this cry it stays in your head forever, you can no longer silence it. You try to forget it, you forget by force, you repress it, to no avail. This cry also became immediate data of your consciousness, it pervaded your soul.


It is true, I completely forgot, so many years have passed since that event, how could I possibly remember?


For you this was of course a coincidence, for it cannot be anything else in so artificially partitioned time. What is actually happening to you, is not really happening to you at all, events are only arranged in time, consecutively, chronologically, precisely. In your opinion man is not marked by anything at all. He does not exist in duration. But this is not man.


He is marked by others, we mark one another, we give each other labels, we define each other according to roles. We do this, they know more precisely.


But we are not talking about this now, this is shallow, superficial. When you heard this cry, it was not for the first time. As a child you heard it, when they slaughtered the pig that you had grown to love. What was it called? Did you tell anyone about this experience of yours?


I gave it a name, but I cannot remember it. No, I do not think so. Who could I tell? The horror of my sadness, imbued with anger (against the butchers), I could not hide any of this, and neither did I need to, as I was a child. Above all they would not understand this. They would laugh at me.


Even those who loved you?


(He was visibly uneasy, he had nothing to say, and after all there was no need for him to say anything.)


Now you know why you cannot forget the end of Josef K. in Ka’s novel. It’s only a novel you say. Franz gave Josef K. a name, and he loved him.


So why did he have to slaughter him like a pig (in the novel)? Do you mean to say, Henri, that this was not just in the novel; how do these trials take place where you live?


It is different. Prague, Berlin, Moscow, Belgrade, Paris, in all the large cities of the world as well as in the small ones the trial takes time. It is really all one trial. Franz succeeded in ending it well, only that way could he hear his cry.


Yes, in small towns there are also many cries. My Ljubljana has heaps of legal documents, let alone trials that are so important that there is no documentation on them. There are cities that are famous simply for the grandeur of their trials.


Most of you look on this intimidation of human freedom in a similar way to Niccolo. As though it is only possible to effectively rule man – people with force, by threatening to commit an offense, using all effective means. Almost the same is the case with your words.


Our loudest words are dead slogans and appeals. Only occasionally does there shine forth from Their words, the transparent shine of a numbed soul. When the loudest people among us speak like earthly gods, we are blinded by the image they create of themselves, of each other, one about the other amongst themselves.


The dance of shadows... when shadows dance, the soul withdraws.

I think we have chatted enough, by all means more than is necessary, for us to harmonise with each other in order to do your homework.


Socrates, Socrates...

Truly, truly I do not know...



(Henri now at last helps Shus formulate what is for him an enigmatic but crucial question in Endophasia II.): Is the nation a subject?


If the nation is a subject,

if it is a living being,

if it is a being as such, a being in itself, a being for itself,

then it is not a nation:

an economic structure, a structure of capitalism, of capital

or a political structure or national structure or the structure

of an armada or of administration

or a common religion, the structure of a church

or some other structure;

then the nation is not an institution and the nation’s essence cannot be defined, neither with state nor with republican boundaries, nor with national institutions, whether they be:

political, military, economical or even cultural institutions, and the nation cannot even be defined with a literary language, let alone political speech, for even literary language is not the living language of the nation but the formation of its institutions for it is vulnerable and subject to autocracy and power, its interventions, in the sense of Newspeak,

neither with history written through the optics of ideology,

nor with the planned common future based on trends,

visible present times, nor with the declared values of the future, including those concerning national independence and identity as a folkloric particularity, which is permitted by the community of nations, the nation cannot be defined.


If the nation is a subject, what is that for it, what does it mean for it?


If the nation is a subject, then it lives as a subject, in a relationship with other nations, freely, only then can we say that say that it is a nation. If it is so, then the nation’s freedom is its essence and it cannot be defined precisely because it is free, if this is how it is with its essence, it is also so with the nation itself, with all of its essence. In this case the nation cannot even be defined in its essence.


Every definition of the nation will corroborate some determinism, some integralism, some totalitarianism, some institutionalism. A defined nation is a dead nation, it is a paper nation, a nation on paper. There can be many things present in the definition of a nation that are of vital importance for the nation, for its existence; only freedom cannot be present in this definition. Where do you consider the uniqueness of a nation to come from?


If the nation is a subject, it will draw its uniqueness from within itself, from its desire for freedom, it will live and die in this way, when it exhausts its desire. When it no longer desires its own freedom, it will die (die out) as a nation. All that will remain will be a structure, defined within the framework of an institution, or alternatively, it will blend in with other nations and never with one nation alone.

If a nation is free, its nationality cannot be taken away from it by any other nation, no other power, no force, no weapons, war, occupation, or denationalisation can threaten it. The nation defends itself by increasing its desire for freedom; it extols its identity.


Concerning denationalisation...? What is denationalisation?


Denationalisation...? If the nation gradually gives up its identity, if its members agree to denationalisation, if the nation’s cores agree to it and at first unnoticeably, barely perceptibly, the nation as an indivisible whole agrees with it, the nation’s entire community, then the nation is threatened. However, it has not been threatened by any external force or pressure, it has been threatened by its consent. If the nation is free, it alone can choose to deny its lineage, it can deny its lineage only if it is free.

A nation that is very large in number and a nation whose population is dwindling is no less a nation than are other, great nations. This is so because nationality is not numerousness, for the greatness of a nation cannot be measured, neither by the size of the occupied territory nor by the number of its souls. Therefore those nearer the truth are those who say that the small nation can be freer than large nations, and what is important: freer than the communities of nations, if it does not give up yearning for freedom.


Concerning the members of the nation...: You do not appear to have a very high opinion of them. Just a (dry) opinion does not mean much. But desire does, if it is genuine. It is an unfortunate term: member. A member is someone who belongs to someone, who counts himself as belonging to someone. To be determined by the nation, to be imbued with its nationality is something completely different, it runs deep and has nothing to do with numbers.


And yet they keep counting the numbers of members of nations: with censuses, numbers are kept, their appurtenance to the nation is registered. The nationality could give up this number-counting with no harm and in truth the members of the nation do resist it, this counting disgusts them.


The truth of their appurtenance, the intensity of their identity cannot be measured.


Therefore, the freedom of the nation is imbued with the freedom of every free individual, his freedom can only be supplemented by free subjects. When the subject is threatened – the individual, this small particle in the nation, the nation is threatened, its peculiarity, its identity, we can say that the nation is endangering itself.


It must be so according to hypotheses, if the nation is a subject?


The freedom of the nation is alive only if, the freedom in the nation is revived, otherwise nationality becomes superficial patriotism, the exclusivity of secret societies. Propaganda is aimed at the subject: at the individual and the nation. Its aim is the objectivisation of both. Propaganda agitates the members, but that is only the external impression. Propaganda slogans are admittedly dead symbols, slogans which have magical power when they penetrate into the subject and become facts of consciousness.


This term »member of a nation« is truly unfortunate, it leads us away from what is essential.


But we are talking about two subjects. There is not only analogy between subjectivity or the uniqueness of the subject of the individual and the subjectivity of the subject of the nation; the tie is stronger. This connection stems from the universality of the virtue of freedom and it is fateful. Man and nation are fatefully connected to it. These are two subjects and I know no others.


If there is only one subject, is that man? Then the nation is not a subject and then these hypotheses mislead, they lead away from the truth.


If there was only one subject and it was the nation, then I would not know about it, about my nation. Only the nation would know about me and it would not need me. But if it would need me, it would need me only as a means to realise the hierarchy of supermen without subjectivity, on the summit of which is just one subject, which has consumed all the others.


Quite a number of similar attempts in the history of nations have gone wrong. But still!


But we never learn anything from history, even if we constantly claim and above all proclaim the opposite. Until recently we had one sole historical subject: the ZK, »Zveza pravichnih« [Union of the Just]. From there stem the difficulties with understanding the subject of the individual and the nation.


But you are being tormented by a third subject.


It is true. Sometimes I ask myself, what if those who say that there are three subjects are right after all.


You are asking me if God is a subject. But didn’t you solve this truly important question in your conversation with John?


Of course I did, but doubt keeps on surfacing. To worship God as a person, i.e. as a subject, is our dominant religion. In view of the increasing number of new imported faiths and their members, a kind of planetary (global) neo-polytheism is again appearing. Their gods are singular or at least super-subjects.


But that is not your problem; you do not succumb to convictions or faith. There is something else. The essence...?


The certainty I am after sometimes seems nevertheless close to faith or conviction; it evades me; when I think I have it, it disappears.


»Of course we all know that the truth is a miracle, but it is only the death of knowledge; what miracle is knowledge then?« It is fundamentally obscured with the mixing up of levels of transcendence and reality. The essence...


Knowledge tells us that it is god who is the essence within us. In other words, the uniqueness of the individual and the nation, two subject therefore, is divine – god is in them.


So you see (he jokes), it should be enough for some time, to soothe your doubt. But what interests us is concrete individuality, the uniqueness of the self, the manifestation of the essence of yourself and your nation. »Hic Rodos! What is alive (vital) concerns you, does it not? ...«


(Shus beseeched Henri in his somewhat enraptured style):

If we overlooked the uniqueness of the nation,

if we sold out the land,

if we hired ourselves out to foreigners beyond the limits of good taste,

if we neglected the culture of the nation in favour of material comfort (a high living standard),

if we renounced our language wherever and whenever possible,

if we disowned our uniqueness to such an extent that it we could hardly notice it any longer,

(as has been the case thus far – in the history of the nation so far),

would we still be a nation?


(The two men remain silent, it is usually so, at least at the beginning of the conversation. Then they speak outside time, at the same time; but the way it happens cannot be written down. Their speech blends into one, or more precisely, it is imbued with Shus’ inner speech. At the end Shus sums up a few more of their extratemporal replies and he makes note of them as literally as he can under »their comments«! But he does not write them down literally because as he does this – it is enough simply to try or to strive for this – the two men go quiet for a moment. Alternatively, one could possibly say about this pause – their living words, thoughts – that the two men have stopped talking live to it. But he wants precisely that, to summarise the living meaning of their thoughts, not just dead words. He cannot grasp or read these living thoughts even twice in the same way. And he can only translate inner speech into living language, and this one alone can he express in his native »mother« tongue, if he makes a special effort also in literary language. Only this one can be translated into all languages. But we are conversing directly, in inner speech, aren’t we?)



(Henri now hears him at last.): And the concluding hypothesis! For the second time!


(Now Shus grows talkative, like a school pupil he recites his original concluding hypothesis from 1985, as well as the explanation or amendment to go with it.):


The concluding hypothesis – the first one: I will begin with the other subject: the other one is a negative hypothesis. It is unbelievably expanded and tangible; it is even objective; it stems from the fact that the person is an object, and according to it the nation is an objective formation, but the creative nation does not have a spirit and neither does the firm man or maybe they do have it, a spirit namely, but they still do not have themselves, for the possibility alone to have a spirit is given the subject only after the difference between having and being has been erased. In truth, there are heaps of these other hypotheses, but they nevertheless have a common direction and stem from the turning-point, that is why I speak of them as one sole.


Its problematic lies in the fact that it is also set up with a spirit, although against it alone, that is why I call it negative hypothesis, but I could just as well call it an inverted hypothesis, because of the ontological turn. You convince the nation and nations that the soul is nothing and matter everything (and things and their material order), while you rule with the spirit.


It is difficult for me to formulate a concluding hypothesis, the only one with which the spirit of the nation would be satisfied, and my spirit at peace. But already when I began, I knew that I will not be able to stop. The nation’s spirit yearns for freedom, it seeks it. It wonders: is it still unique, is the nation’s spirit even alive or is it only an illusion? His reason’s understanding replies somewhat unclearly:



»The freedom of the nation is a fact, there is no surer fact among the facts in his consciousness. But still he will never find it if he looks for it outside himself, in relationship to other nations. There is only one possibility, that he finds it, that he moves off the turning point, which is blocks his sight and he will see only that what he is looking for is himself.«

It is true, this is a very old hypothesis although not very well known and every time everyone must delve into its details if they want to understand it; persuasion will not help.

If the hypothesis reminds you of any person having a free spirit, who is wandering around in the dark looking for his spirit and asking whether his body has a soul, and because he is afraid for it he also asks what is threatening it and if it is mortal; you may have a good laugh.

The Upanishads sage is serious and says: »Wrong question, wrong answer. You have no spirit or soul, that is you alone.« There is an indescribable difference between what to have and what to be.


So what do you now say about your piece of work from those times?


I have hardly anything to add.


Then renew it at least in spirit. I do not hear it recited like this. (Henri jokes) You do not even hear it any more yourself. Concluding hypothesis – another one!


(tries to talk his way out of a pickle): it was hard for me to formulate a concluding hypothesis, the only one with which the spirit of the nation would be satisfied and my spirit at peace. I nevertheless did this fifteen years ago. (It was first published, if we can call twenty copies a publication, in the ISU report in 1985.) Already now I must complete it.

Although I believe that in a theoretical sense it continues to stand, it practically no longer has its material basis. It would be hard for me to say what its essence is now. May I take this opportunity to first of all repeat it (not completely literally):

The nation’s spirit yearns for freedom, it seeks it. It asks itself: is it still unique, is the spirit of the nation alive at all, was it just an illusion all along? The comprehension of reason answers it somewhat unclearly...


(Henri sees Shus’ growing pickle which is almost becoming hopeless; he helps him): »The freedom of a nation is a fact, there is no surer fact among the facts in his consciousness. But still, one thing is certain: he will never find freedom if he looks for it outside himself, in relation to other nations, even less so in their laps. There is only the possibility that he will find it, that he will shift from the turning-point, which is blocking the view, and he will only see that what he is looking for is himself.«


Nowadays I would say that my former hypothesis about the »free spirit« of my nation was nevertheless more of an illusion, which gradually grew, reached a climax when my nation decided to gain independence – ten years before the end of the second millennium. But independence does not yet mean freedom, i.e. freedom of the spirit. My nation directed all its spiritual energy outside of itself, precisely where it has no possibilities to remain uniquely unique. It not only directed them at relations with other nations but also at the community of nations of expansive Europe. The nation spiritually entered into »voluntary slavery«. It desires it so strongly (humiliating servility), that it has almost certainly forever lost its freedom, its uniqueness or, as we say nowadays, its identity. It wants to be a fruitful nation within it, at all costs, at its own expensive. If Europe really was a community of nations and if we did not have as much experience with communities of nations as we do, then one could understand this fateful error, one could accept it. But as it is? To be a fruitful nation at all costs? To have one’s own state and to neglect one’s identity...


But in your first concluding hypothesis something fundamental is lacking, that is the impression I have every time I hear this idea of yours. I reject the thought that he is resigned. However, he is impersonal and soulless, that is the impression I have. Will Socrates agree? Did he not warn you against succumbing to disappointment, or becoming dejected...


Yes: »against becoming dejection, in the face of this, perhaps final trial of my nation, for from it is growing hatred towards logos and the exploration of reason, similar to hatred for people. Both have their origin in disappointment«, he said. It would be too cheap an exit from my quandary (that is what you would say Henri), if you argued that it (the hypothesis) naturally lacks vivacity, something living or even life itself, that this does not exist in hypotheses. As the hypothesis speaks – I hope that is the way it is – precisely about the life beat of my nation in a given moment of time (fateful facts of consciousness for it).


Perhaps it lacks love for the nation. And I have in mind neither active love nor Paul’s love (from the triad: faith, hope, love). 


Perhaps love from three virtues (truth, freedom, love)? Yes, in his opinion love is imbued with truth, freedom. But tell me, Henri, how should I love my nation, which has voluntarily chosen servitude of spirit, which has betrayed itself, its uniqueness, that which makes it what it is? Is that not why Ivan was so angry with his nation that is also mine?


Ask him!


He will not answer me. I cannot tune into him. I thought perhaps because he was too angry with his nation (also mine). It is true, I sometimes have a similar feeling about the servility of my nation as he did, sometimes the very opposite. I really do not know...


This uncertainty comes from your hypothesis, how does it go...


(without any enthusiasm Shus reads out his hypothesis. About the servility of the nation, of which he was until recently particularly proud):

We so readily succumb to the effect of the actualised virtue of the servility of the Slovenian nation, and think that servility affects only farmhands and not landowners, that we are ashamed of the servility of farmhands but not of its authors. If someone calls me a farmhand, that does not bother me as much if they do that with contempt than if they do it with the purpose of keeping me in the role of farmhand.

However, this servility is only an alternation (modality) of loyalty and it helps create the structure (is constitutive) of every institutional hierarchy, the order of institutions.

Is the national colouring of Slovenian servility through the centuries so very characteristic of the Slovenians; is it so typical of them? It must be seen as it is in its pure form, this particularity of servility, without virtue loyalty, which is actually servility, characteristic of all nations on this earth, except that those who create their servility are of the same nationality as those who pretend to be farmhands. The servility of such a nation is not only less evident, but is also less propagated.

The second emanation of servility, and this one must be separated from the first one, is: the servility of the nation towards other nations. Once again the particularity of the historical servility of the Slovenians towards other nations is one thing and the giving way of one nation to another is a different thing. And there is no need to actualise the first of these particularities beyond all good taste as though it were a national dish of the finest sort.



If the nation of Slovenians is a clan of farmhands,

if »Slovenians are farmhands, born to be farmhands, brought up to be farmhands!«,

is Ivan’s scolding of his own nation, this anger with his own nation justifiable? If it is so then there is no need to turn things around and blame the symbolic and mobilising power of this ideological appeal to the nation which is directed with the desire to free its nation from servitude and not the other way round, with the desire to preside over the nation.

Things are things and symbols are things that do not stay just where you throw them. (I know I have hit a raw nerve.)

If this call spoke more strongly about the generation of servility instead of about the clan of farmhands, it would not be one of those calls that is so very strong and remains topical for so long. Whether he wanted to or not, Ivan contributed to the servility of his nation with this appeal. He was very angry when he made this appeal to the nation and he did not see this servility of his nation in the light of servility in nations and the servility of nations. To actualise servility as the fundamental sin of the nation or at least as its main national characteristic, is at least excessive, if not the gross oversimplification of a powerful symbol – an appeal that will perhaps last for centuries.

The burden of servility, the value orientation of one’s nation, is great, its connotation is negative, that is why it makes the nation feel servitude, servitude in the nation, and if such a value comes alive in the nations spirit, it certainly does not liberate it, does not lead to freedom. (If I express myself in a rather more complex way: the evaluation of this value and this appeal is intensive and negative and this cannot be concealed. However, intensity is immeasurable and can also be infinite.)

The appeal and the value in it are symbols; they are dead words on the outside but within themselves they contain magical power. Thrown into the world, the word is dead, but when you so much as touch it or it touches you with its spirit, it is as though it were alive and functioning and directing. Propagandists of every kind know this. They operate with an alienated symbol, an appeal and not with its meaning in context. The propagandist does not throw the book, he throws an appeal, and even that is only the external sign of what he is throwing.

If you ask me what I want with Ivan? I would want to reduce his influence, his power, the use of this power of his, and do not say that I want to establish the limitation of artistic freedom. So much only as an example, for great is the weight of the appeal concerning servitude of the nation. Ivan also felt a rage and fury against the nation, that is also mine, when he uttered this appeal, its magic works when a compatriot utters it, utters it in such a way that I feel this rage and fury. And this rage and fury affect me and not just the slogan, for them the slogan is just a cue, just a fellow passenger, their correlation, and if you ask me: what would I want with this? I would want to destroy its magic power.

Language says that the slogan is alive and strong, but it is not so. To be able to do this, I should be stronger than what is inside it, then I would revive the language and the language would be: alive.











Concerning the nation from metareality – facts stemming directly from consciousness and our daily reality


»A correct notion (said Diotima to Socrates),

as you well know, is not based on evidence and therefore cannot be cognisance, for how could something that has not been proven be cognisance, and neither is it incognisance, for how could something that determines the truth be incognisance? It is therefore clear that a correct notion is somewhere halfway between cognisance and incognisance.«



(Shus wonders, he cannot understand, how can so rapid a turn in the nation’s self-confidence bi possible. »Was it just my false perception of it?« From somewhere in the background he cannot help thinking: a thought, a warning, a hint, a gibe. He does not himself know what to call this fact of consciousness, even less how to repel it. »That will be Socrates«, it occurs to him.):




Very well, without disappointment, dejection, but the facts of consciousness are saying that soon there will be only a handful of people that care about the Slovenian nation, its uniqueness, freedom, identity (as they like to say nowadays, they care little for what that really means). A handful of them...


Would they still be a nation?

Of course they would be,

but they would be a small nation, a nation that is disappearing, whose number is again becoming decisive for its existence.

It seems to me, it really seems to me,

that we would be a nation, only a handful of them left,

who are only a peculiarity

for the historical memory (of the nation),

which was free for a moment.



(Shus implores: Socrates, Henri, Étienne):

Nothing has yet been said about the greatest opponents of the nation!

Who are They? (Shus asks himself):

Firstly it must be said that the nation itself conceives its greatest opponents.

The greatest opponents of the nation are neither foreigners,

nor its own rulers who first disowned it, they are greater than them: nationalists among them.

They extolled the country – the state, and not the nation.

Although acts – the current history of once brotherly nations – have taught us most about this.

We liberated ourselves (or more precisely: they liberated us),

but not as a nation, but as a state!

The difference between a nation and a state is not small and is not only in the intensity of the national consciousness of the nation and the patriots.

We liberated ourselves or more precisely,

They (the visible and invisible representatives of the nation – the patriots), liberated us.

From the fetters of Yugo-slave-ia they led us into freedom.

They said that we are no longer just a people, a clan, a community, that we are now a State. That is a nation with its own country! – in their opinion of course.

Our brothers until yesterday – the »Sclavi« from the South – were fooled by Them – their rulers and greatest patriots –

dreamers in SAN.

Their clan believed them and They also believed, that they are no longer a nation among nations, that they are themselves a chosen nation – called to form a state for themselves and other non state-forming nations, that they themselves will rule their smaller brothers, only peoples and clans.

They were summoned to lead the new Nation – the State of Serbosclavia – into a bright future.

And if not all, then at least those in whose soil are buried the bones of Their: fathers, grandfathers, great-grandfathers, the ancestors of the Serbs.

But these lie also under the walls of Vienna/Wienne/ Vindobone, when as Janissaries and vassals of the Turks we besieged the city the white city.

(That is what the more prudent ones said, but they did not listen to them.)

The slaughter began; I no longer know which number it is, but I know that it was the most inglorious and pointless one in the Balkans so far.

Brother murdered brother, slave murdered slave, one nation killed its brother nation.

For glory, for history, for a bright future.

Them who have lost their sound judgement.



The war was as cruel as though there had never been any civilisation in the southern Balkans.

If necessary, we will (which means you will) eat grass, said They, who grew rich in the war by robbing their conquerors,

and even more so by robbing their own nation.

Did anything happen to them?

Were their consciences stirred?

Some of the freer ones among them warned their compatriots, in vain, they were blind and deaf for all, except for their leaders.

But they most believed Him, the One and Only, who was free for all of them, who consumed the freedom of their decision in its entirety for a time of history that was not small.

His name was Slobodan, how strangely history sometimes jokes with Their names.

The second in greatness was Tudzhman, called to be a general-historian-ruler.

An imitator of Him, the One and Only – oppressor of all the nations in the southern Balkans.

We Veneti were relatively lucky to have Milan.

The homestead, the homeland is his, but he is the mildest of the rulers.

All(es) klein: small country, small president, small personal legitimacy, few patriots, but much despondency of the subjects. Far too much!

(In the official language it will be said):

All(es) klein: Klein/es/-Führer/s/ Kleinstaat, kleine persönliche Herrschaft, Nationalisten wenig, aber viel Kleinmut, viel Uterworfene. Viel zu viel!


(Shus thinks he hears Étienne’s warning):

»Have you not sufficiently offended him with the essay

“The roof of the world – The valley-dwellers visit the roof of the world”?«:

O, Étienne ... How can it be possible, Étienne, that the story of voluntary slavery of the nations to Them, (the nationalists) in their nation, and Them, in foreign nations, and that other which is inseparable from the first:

about the One and only that is constantly being repeated?

Is it eternal? It is being so obstinately renovated, through all the history of the clans, peoples, nations?


(In the background we can hear a hymn of the great choir in the stadium and they are singing with them: one after another, they that are gathered here, soon to be a multitude, already hundreds, thousands of them.):



»If eternity exists,

if eternity has a name,

the name of eternity is Tito’s name.« 



(Shus is horrified... He pulls himself together and then he tries terribly hard to find someone to talk with, at least someone who would want to hear what this mighty choir is singing at the stadium while celebrating the day of youth): »He was God for them.« 



It is not enough to read a poetic text and to abandon oneself to it, it is not the same if we analyse its meaning,

it is not the same when we also hear its melody,

it is not the same when we hear it that moment in duration,

when the multitudes hear it at the same time.

If you understand all this and also that which can be expressed neither with words nor with melody, that which brings them into being as a correlate, then you have understood the transcendental nature of values.

He was for us the One and only, he was God for us.

When he died (although for history He will never die),

His successors appeared on the scene.

At times there were six of them, at times there were eight,

(the first three – the three nations that once made up the SHS – I have already presented).

But we can say that they are sometimes ten in total (by all means I will not be too precise here), time must move away, the facts of consciousness, to see them more clearly, to harmonise ourselves with Them.

And there were now seven or eight nations.

A »new« nation of Bosniaks was born or reborn in blood,

so far it had only been acknowledged its religious uniqueness

(Muslim identity).

The nation of Albanians revolted, their number is a doubled number.

They do not want to be just a national community, just a clan, they want to be a Nation, the most numerous community of clans, the strongest in the Balkans (or at least in the neighbouring lands).

The Vojvodina community has gone temporarily quiet.

Their dukes are leading the wars in principled fashion

(they are at the head only at the beginning of the war).

Half of the nation of Montenegrins were also liberating themselves (through Them that did not trust the ‘White City’ [Belgrade]).


The Macedonians kept to themselves as much as they could,

Their leaders sought their identity amongst the Greeks and the Bulgarians (they are afraid of the Greeks and »their Albanians« even more than they are of the Serbs).

On the horizon of history is appearing the smallest possible Serbia,

so small that no Serb patriot can see it,

and if he sees it, then he can see hardly any Serb in it.

And there arose a mighty Croatia (the »Ustasha« in it),

Its historians wrote a provisional history,

saying that it is the only victor in this war.

It occupied all its dream-historical territories,

(except for all the »subalpine Croats« – the Veneti – the Slovenians).


(»But this song can only be heard if you listen to it to the accompaniment of the Gusle«, claimed Shus. The gusle is the most popular folk instrument in the southern Balkans. The people say that even Homer knew how to play it.)




(This was Shus’ cry, then he calmed down, aware that the musical instrument, his music, had taken him into a state of consciousness that we call pathos. He tried to continue in a more peaceful, more reconcilable tone. Of course, he did not succeed immediately.): 



I could say that my people are a »nation« or now (more correctly) a »national community« or even just a clan of compatriots. That it is giving more than it is receiving or expecting because it is giving itself, its unique identity. When it blends in, drowns or assimilates in the promised land that is the EU.

Of course, the representatives of the great land will claim the opposite. And the third group, the most intelligent ones, will say that it depends only on the point of view. Of course, if you are a European – a member of the »European nation« – then you have nothing to lose, you have already disowned your uniqueness and national identity. You have deprived yourself of it, that is your problem, but in doing so you also deprive your own people of it, people who were until recently your compatriots.

Have we not just survived the fiasco of just one »Yugoslav nation«? We are always lured by the path to the promised land or a bright future.

We became free only for a short time, we sold ourselves for the illusion of freedom, that as a nation we had forgotten caution and the tenacity of self-defence. We did not listen to Slovenians living just outside our borders, we had forgotten them, disowned them a long time ago.

They used to fly to Belgrade, now they fly to Brussels. To negotiate? Really? Who will believe them in fifty years time?

Germanisation from the north, Italianisation from the west, Hungarisation from the east. Tudzhman is strutting about in the south. He say we are subalpine Croats.


(wonders in desperation): And what is this promised land of Europe like? Bureaucratised, greedy, oppressing; militarily cowardly. Except when it is hit by history, when its nations start fighting each other. So far they have only stirred up two world wars (on this planet Earth). Only two super-nations are nationally dominant: the Germans and the French. And it is bursting at these seams, already now as it is coming about. Its most penetrating individuals-emigrants are still fuelling the New World – the US. In terms of faith it is divided, culturally it is arrogant. It adorns itself with standing up for human rights and forgets about the rights of entire nations. (The welfare of the declared fight for the right to work is particularly felt by the growing armada of unemployed persons.) It curtails, and more, even negates the rights of smaller nations and minorities to their own cultural identity. It thoughtlessly, treacherously assimilates them, yes, just as They were instructed by Niccolo.


»Is it true that you have agreed as to what will be our official language in the EU? Why do we (our generation) have to learn so many languages of occupying nations?«

Better not ask me which ones. In return you offer us European identity, which will perhaps never exist. And what hurts me most in this is the hypocrisy of the modern-day expansion of the super-system(s). They used to expand with open religious expansion – piety – Christianisation and with the sword – armies with mercenaries of all types. Nowadays, in modern times, this is happening with the expansion of the capital of multinational companies using all means. Now they are testing what has so far been the lesser known (by all means most hidden) form of expansion, when nations themselves beg to be occupied. In this they humble themselves shamefully and are proud of their progress. They give themselves voluntarily into slavery with the conviction that they are going into a promised land. Concerned only with not missing the TRANSITION, i.e. the transport of voluntary slaves. It is better not to ask me who persuaded them to do this.

O Étienne ..., the people here talk about nothing else but the timetable. Who will be first and who will be the last, who will perhaps miss the train that leads to the EU. We are not interested in our rapid stratification into hundreds of thousands of poor and miserable people which is caused by the change in system. (Sociologists learnedly refer to it as restratification and the transformation of the system, but for now it is keeping cautiously quiet about it. They told them that it is not so...) Even the scandalous privileges of a handful of people, the new economic elites and parvenus in government do not upset us too much.

But of course this is not the only way of rapidly ridding oneself of one’s identity. There is also SECI – originally a southern European trade community, later perhaps to be a political, military and then, of course, a veritable SEU (Southern European Union). Will another war be necessary between its wealthy north and backward south, for the continued development of humanity, before the USA realises the project of globalising the planet? But this is (at least for now) the reserve scenario, regarding which They have not yet reached a full agreement.

What do you say, Etienne, about this misfortune of ours? Is this natural...?



(almost indignant): Have we not already discussed this numerous times?


Of course we have... But this time I will listen to you more attentively. My daily routine informs me that you are telling me about voluntary servitude more clearly than any contemporary.


Let us try then!


I already understand. (Shus reads the first two paragraphs from his Treatise on Freedom: Concerning voluntary servitude. He reads it and wonders... »Étienne, this is as though I heard you for the first time«.):


To be perfectly honest, it is unproductive to discuss whether freedom is natural. The first reason being that no-one can be in servitude without being forced to suffer some kind of evil. And there is nothing that would be so much opposed to the world, that is ruled by nature, which is intelligent, than injustice itself.


All that we can say is that freedom is natural, and therefore, in my opinion, not only are we born with our own freedom, but also with the will to defend it. If we ever doubt about this and if we are so estranged from ourselves that we can no longer recognise neither our essence nor our innate inclination, then I must honour you by, so to speak, lifting the wild beasts onto the pedestal in order to show you your nature and your state.


I could not have received a clearer answer to the question that has been tormenting me more and more each day. Oh Étienne, eternal thanks go to you from all who are wavering when they are being deprived of the will to defend themselves, their freedom.



(Étienne now prays, although many would nowadays say that he is reciting one of his poems or that he is practising his rhetoric. Shus knows very will that this is not so. True prayer is a one-off, you cannot erase its meaning having heard it once because it is recorded in eternity. But what is strange is that in your soul you never hear it twice the same way, never the same way.):



O God, help me;

when people are deaf,

beasts howl: Long live freedom.

Many of them die immediately after they are caught;

as a fish dies, as soon as it is not in water,

in this way many beings leave the light of day,

do not wish to survive the loss of their natural freedom.

If there was a hierarchy amongst animals,

then beasts that die immediately after being caught,

would belong to the animal nobility.


But the other animals, from the smallest to the largest,

when they are caught, put up so much resistance,

with claws, horns, beaks,

that they speak clearly enough this way,

how much do they care about what they have lost.

Being completely caught,

they give us so many clear signs of their disgust,

that it can clearly be seen

that from this moment onwards they are vegetating rather than living,

that they are restraining their lives rather

to deplore their lost advantage,

than to continue enjoying their servitude.

Even oxen groan under the yoke. Birds melt away in the cage...



So, every being that feels its existence, feels the crime of subjugation and tends to freedom; if even animals that have been tamed to serve man can be subjugated only after their contrary desire has been suppressed, what misfortune this can be for man who alone is truly born to live freely. It has made him so unnatural that he has lost his ancient memory of his original state and his desire to revive it.


Is servitude for man then the consequence of the lost original memory of our natural, original state of consciousness? Why then do some people keep putting up resistance against servitude and act naturally, in primeval fashion?


There are always some that are happier than others, those that are born under a lucky star, that feel the weight of the yoke and cannot help shaking it off; the people that never grow accustomed to the yoke.


(Shus did not dare interrupt him any more, or disturb him with his inappropriate questions. Endophasia was now almost ideally in tune. With occasional pauses, Étienne continued his visionary meditation):



And if freedom were lost completely, outside this world, these people would revive it in their perceptions, they would feel it in their spirit and keep enjoying it. Servitude does not suit their taste, not even when it is embellished, no! ...

It is therefore certain that with the loss of freedom, bravery is also lost. And subjects, in contrast, show neither enthusiasm nor anger in battle: they approach danger as though they were bound, numb; they do not even feel that deep inside them the passionate desire for freedom is burning, giving them the strength to ignore danger, and creating the desire for fame and honour given by a beautiful death surrounded by comrades.




O good God!

What could this be?

What shall we call this?

What misfortune is this?

What kind of a flaw is this, what immense flaw is this,

that a multitude of people is not only obedient but actually servile?



Let fifty thousand armed persons

stand on two sides,

let them take up fighting positions and fight;

some are free and fight for their freedom,

others use war to try and take it away from them;

who will win, which side will go more heartily into battle:

those that hope that the prize for victory will be

the preservation of their own freedom,

or those that expect only the other party’s servitude

as a prize for the blows inflicted and the blows received?

But what? If it is enough to desire freedom,

if all that is needed for it is willpower,

will there be a nation that believes,

that is has paid its freedom too dearly, if it knows,

that it can be attained simply through desire?



But of all the good things of this world that the people so strongly desire, there is only one value, for which people, I do not know why, lose the desire – and that thing is freedom – so great a value, so pleasant a good things. If this good thing is lost, all the evils will well up, and the good things that remain through it and that are corrupted in slavery lose their taste and odour.



Freedom is the only thing that people do not desire,

and that, it would appear,

for just one reason:

if they desired it, they would have it;

they reject freedom, this jewel,

because it is too easily attainable.




(was visibly overcome with emotion, moved to tears, even though he did not have a real reason for tears): Etienne, I think we are friends, if not, you would not be speaking with me, I would not be able to hear you in the inner speech. Or at least not in this way. I still cannot understand how it is possible, that I thought and of course also wrote about the value of freedom (in »The Value systems of the institutional structure«, in 1985), although I cannot compare myself with you, not even in my dreams, and yet we are similar in essence and in spirit. Was that because I moved Henri ... or did he move me? Unfortunately I was not acquainted with your »Discourse on Voluntary Servitude«. And I am not saying this to gain favour with you; I am only surprised and it is as though I was being told that in Endophasia there is something that surpasses human reason and this gives the cognisance in it startling certainty. At least I feel this is so.


Ask him! ... But you do not even need to, for if you were not searching for cognisance – the cognisance of ancient memory that is in all people, then your effort would be in vain, you would not understand what I am telling you. You would not hear your inner voice. You would not be talking to me, nor with Henri, nor with Socrates.


I would like to hear your cognisance on the rule of One once again. The system of the One and Only fascinates me more and more by the day. It fascinates me as the direct fact of our consciousness, our togetherness. How is it possible, Étienne, that this servitude within us is so almighty?


Now you could do something on your own, in your own way, you could present me, summarise my ideas in your normal speech!


It is worth trying; perhaps it will be possible (he goes quiet and reflects...):

I will now allow myself some freedom and briefly summarise the ideas of Étienne de La Boétie concerning that other form of unfreedom – voluntary servitude, as they would say to me today, when the language is a little more complex – structured. That is, concerning voluntary servitude, stemming from the very nature of institutions, the hierarchy of the system, the value foundation of their order. The essence is the same, as Étienne de La Boétie says about it – it cannot be more beautiful, it is only a little more difficult to recognise as that is precisely what we do not want!









Let One alone be master,

Let One alone represent us,

Let One Alone be the representative of all he can represent.

That is what Homer would say nowadays,

But Étienne would only smile

and reply something like this:


For the present I should like merely to understand how it happens that so many men, so many villages, so many cities, so many nations, sometimes (in their history)

suffer under a single tyrant

who has no other power than the power they give him;

who is able to harm them only to the extent to

which they have the willingness to bear with him;

who could do them absolutely no injury unless

they preferred to put up with him rather than contradict him.

Surely a striking situation!

Yet it is so common that one must grieve the more and wonder

the less at the spectacle of a million men serving in wretchedness,

their necks under the yoke,

not constrained by a greater multitude than they,

but simply, it would seem, delighted and charmed

by the name of one man alone

whose power they need not fear,

for he is evidently the one person

whose qualities they cannot admire

because of his inhumanity and brutality toward them.




But O good Lord!

What strange phenomenon is this?

What name shall we give to it?

What is the nature of this misfortune?

What vice is it, or, rather, what degradation?

To see an endless multitude of people not merely obeying,

but driven to servility?

Not ruled, but tyrannized over?

These wretches have no wealth, no kin, nor wife nor children,

not even life itself that they can call their own.

They suffer plundering, wantonness, cruelty,

not from an army, not from a barbarian horde,

on account of whom they must shed their blood

and sacrifice their lives, but from a single man.

Shall we call subjection to such a leader cowardice?

Shall we say that those who serve him are cowardly and faint-hearted?

If two, if three, if four, do not defend themselves from the one,

we might call that circumstance surprising but nevertheless conceivable.

In such a case one might be justified in suspecting a lack of courage.


But if a hundred, if a thousand endure the caprice of a single man, should we not rather say that they lack not the courage

but the desire to rise against him,

and that such an attitude indicates

indifference rather than cowardice?

When not a hundred, not a thousand men,

but a hundred provinces, a thousand cities, a million men,

refuse to assail a single man from whom

the kindest treatment received is the infliction of serfdom and slavery,

what shall we call that?

Is it cowardice?





What monstrous vice, then,

is this which does not even deserve to be called cowardice,

a vice for which no term can be found vile enough,

which nature herself disavows

and our tongues refuse to name?

But it is not essential that he alone is deprived of something,

but in that he is not given anything.

Nations themselves allow this,

they act in such a way that they are subdued,

for only by rejecting servitude

they would be free.

The nation subjugates itself,

the same nation that can choose:

between servitude and freedom.







Translated from Slovenian by Marko Petrovich


P.S.: Propagating Freedom from TRACTATE ON FREEDOM: »Concerning national institutions« and

»The value system of the nation«, do not belong to this game, added Shus.

Shus’ comment: The title of the original: Étienne de La Boétie: LE DISCOURS DE LASERVITUDE VOLONTAIRE; translation used: RASPRAVA O DOBROVOLJNOM ROPSTVU; translated by Ivan Vejvoda, Belgrade 1986.



published in:

Rajko Shushtarshich, Endofazija II – O narodu iz metastvarnosti, Revija SRP 29/30, 1999



Rajko Shushtarshich, Endofazija I – O narodu iz metastvarnosti, Revija SRP 11/12, 1995
















From metareality – immediate data of consciousness and our everyday reality


»If freedom was completely lost,

outside this world,

these people would revive it in their notions,

they would feel it in their spirit and would carry on enjoying it.

Slavery by no means suits their tastes,

not even when it is embellished! ...«

Étienne de La Boétie 1



And as every dance comes to some kind of an end for every dancer, is what I would say at the end of my conversation (in Endophasia II) 2 added Henri (thought Shus):



So you attach great importance to Étienne’s concluding motto; does this not show rather your faith and hope than the immediate data of your consciousness?


I began my conversation with Étienne already in the first issue of Revija SRP 1/2; with his instructions I wish to adorn Revija SRP 111/112. I did not need to believe anything, to presume anything or to prove anything because the immediate data of consciousness, of which he speaks, can be directly verified by anyone.


(jokes) Let us hope it is so. But there are few that are verified.


Otherwise everything is only a dance of shadows – when the shadows dance their final dance?


No, no, leave that, the real answer is personal.


My dance, more accurately – the dancing of my shadow, ends as everyone’s dance does; the way I lived...


I will pose the question in a different way, was this dance meaningful for you, did you enjoy it?


It made me happy that we remaining collaborators, together with the new ones, have fulfilled the review’s twenty-year program.


In the essays that you labelled utopias, you nevertheless indicated a somewhat more definite framework.


All sorts of things have gathered in this web.


For example?


For example: global bilingualism, i.e. that every nation would have its own speech, language and alphabet, that no other language-speech would try to oust it because all the people on the planet would at the same time have a common global language;

and a Slovenian alphabet for the Slovenians, an alphabet that is based on Latin signs as we used to have – nowadays at least for those that would want it;

to this I would also add my utopian desire that the see sown through SRP would one day sprout. 


No-one is depriving you of the freedom to think and to write, Revija SRP is being issued regularly and besides there is also the Slovenian-English Lives Journal … Is that not enough, you cannot simply dismiss all this.


I sincerely hope that not, but nowadays all this is being systematically overlooked.


That means you care more for the institutional acknowledgement of the superficial ego than you are prepared to admit to yourself.


(visibly uneasy, mumbling) You say that a deeper self forms one and the same personality with the superficial ego. Sometimes I am tempted to go in that direction, especially when it is a case of our togetherness.


(roguishly) For example, in your Letters to patriotic Slovenians. In them you nevertheless express a certain goal, and yet you do not like goals. Shall we rather stick to the journal’s field of activity. What did you actually want?


We were looking for shades of soul and sparks of spirit.


And how much of this have you collected?


That will be for future readers-recorders to say; it is worth waiting a few decades, at least until the system passes away. It would be pointless to expect anything before then, it would all be caught in the obscuring discussions of the system’s role interpreters. I personally would need no more than one reader-recorder.


(roguishly) You already have one.


(looks for excuses) Just in case. Sometimes I read what I have written, I repeat the odd thing, sometimes I rewrite something. It has been so since time immemorial:

From one recorder

to another,

interlocutors outside time,

for him;

that is how she lived,

was preserved;

and lived longer than many coats-of-arms,

flags and countries,

and all manner of crosses —

symbols of power. 



(adds) In the world of shadows!


And in the in-between world – in the world of parallel reality – also!

(Parallel reality meant everything to Shus in the game the Parallel administrative or record-keeping para-reality: everything that is essential, that can by no means be left out or kept secret without at the same time disfiguring the truth in ordinary reality.)


Let it be so for you have really made a good start. So explain it once more, but as briefly as possible – this Parallel reality – for you have already made exhaustive reports on it in two of your essays.


(thinks, then, albeit with difficulty, decides to present it from the game)

Parallel reality, which playfully follows real reality and uncovers it, only serves as an aid to dramaturgical teams for an easier dissection and staging or non-staging of delicate adventures that befall the performers.

Otherwise there are for me only two players in the game of Parallel reality. One is an individual of free will and the other is the game of fate. The game consists in the individual constantly playing around with his freedom, mainly at the expense of his glory; he gives up his freedom and sometimes evades it for the benefit of the (determinism) of the role. That is why fate sometimes plays a nasty trick on it. For in Parallel reality (essential) events occur simultaneously. It is only through a mistake of transcendence, in some strange loop of time that the individual can see. If he goes deep enough, becomes spiritual enough or succeeds in assuming the role as much as possible, he can see what will happen in ordinary reality because it has already happened in parallel reality, or is happening precisely at that moment. The reproach that women’s roles are neglected in the game and are not important enough, is superficial. For fate, even when it is understood to be politics, is of female gender.


(teases him but not in an offensive tone) This is not an unexpected choice for your presentation of intermediate reality for it already exists in both previous essays on it.


Any other presentation would be longer; it could drag on into ordinary reality.


(replies) That’s actually not bad as an argument for this choice...

Now you tell me what moved you so much in my essay? But briefly, in a few words.


(no longer properly differentiates between the two interlocutors, who is asking who, who is explaining to whom, he to Henri or Henri to Shus, but he knows that such permeation of thoughts is not unusual for endophasia)

I was particularly moved by the idea of freedom – freedom as immediate data of consciousness and the idea of permeating the data of consciousness – the word permeating. Can I recapitulate your words and my commentary?


(does not say anything)


(takes this to be consent, so summarises his first attempt to affirm the direct facts of consciousness according to Henri Bergson from the Essay on the directs facts of consciousness.) 3a







(Attempt to affirm the direct facts of consciousness according to Henri Bergson

from the »Essay on the immediate data of consciousness«)


it is not a question of time but of data of consciousness,

where there is no time there is only duration,

common values are immediate data of consciousness,

that can be understood and checked by everyone,

no-one can give them or take them away from anyone,

no system, no institution, no propaganda, not even cultural,

only, if he himself wants will he find them in himself alone.


I do not like to refer to authorities on the subject as is the custom in academic circles, however, in this case the subject we are dealing with is so important and at the same time so inappropriate in our time and space that I will place the greater part of the burden on the shoulders of my interlocutor: Henri Bergson. In this way I will perhaps enter into communication with some individuals that would otherwise be inaccessible without his help. The subject of the conversation between yourself, Henri Bergson and me, if the communication is to be as satisfactory as possible, must affect us, we must study it in depth, the idea of freedom, which is essential for values. Usually in such a situation the reader is faced with the following questions:

Is the reader, his ego, prepared to delve into Henri Bergson’s idea, his ego, his self, his uniqueness?

Did I, my ego, do that? Put more simply, did I actually understand him?

Have we set up a form of communication that is deeper than a purely formal one – the one that is behind symbols and is only symbolised by symbols?

However, readers very much like to withhold from themselves and from others the fundamental question of communication which is:

Is it really so? But this question of scepticism, whether it is pronounced or not, is constantly present in communication. No, is it really so in relation to ideas of those involved in the dialogue and to some extent also other possible authors, which associative thinking always makes us consider, but is it really so with certainty, i.e. in relation to his own aprioristic consciousness. He already knows that a priori. For the more sceptical readers I would say that they are aware of this at least as a possibility. The human mind cannot understand anything that it does not already know. Intuitive comprehension is like the arousal of the primeval memory. And this is therefore the case with the human ethical intuition, the »categorical imperative«. Man cannot value any behaviour deeper than if he has not himself actually experienced it. But for a sceptic I would say that the evaluation of an act is possible only after he has felt the behaviour of someone else, as though it were his own behaviour. As in communication we are for the most part mediating, exchanging ideas, thoughts and feelings via media (intermediaries), we quickly forget that we are fundamentally tied to the mediation of our superficial ego and that we are transmitting data of consciousness via dead symbols, the language in our case. In that case it is not too much if we say a few dead words regarding language and the way these facts are translated into living data of consciousness.

My guiding principle in translating dead symbols is as follows:

What I want to catch is the entire thought and the depth of the idea. When it comes to the language style, which is undoubtedly important despite its lethargy, I am not particularly talented; I could not contradict any linguist. Even Henri Bergson’s translation can be considered controversial, especially as it is not a translation of the original but is a translation of a translation. I maintain that this is not essential. It is additionally marred by brackets and underlined sections which are my fault and are more for sceptics and analysts; the translation is better read without them. I could not substantiate the changes in the translation any other way than that I do it by feeling and perhaps I would be even find support in this from some generous linguist.

But if I nevertheless wanted to analyse this feeling I would say:

Individual symbols, a word, even more than one word at a time, can be exchanged without the composed symbol or sentence, which expresses a complete thought, idea, or value being damaged, if we stick to some principles. Before I list these principles let me emphasise that for the intuition this is one and the same principle, which we call feeling. But this can be so only if what is fundamental is the living thought and not the dead sentence.

The aesthetics of the thought, which comes before the aesthetics of the symbol and the latter only tries to express, can dictate the modification of the symbol. This is the aesthetic reason for the modification of symbols.

Recognising the idea comes before the formal clarity of the symbol or the composed symbol, for example the sentence.

The ethics of the intention of the symbol is the arbitrariness of the symbol, more precisely: the habit. The template of the language cannot dictate thoughts, ideas, values, that which is its inner essence, which gives birth to it. The ethics of the thought comes before the intention of the symbol.

However, these three principles supplement each other wonderfully and help us express our thoughts, ideas, feelings. However, this is dangerous when it comes to translation but it cannot be avoided. We must know that no-one thinks the same thought twice and that no-one could express it twice in the same way. But if we already strive for something, then we are already the casualties of the template of our own expression in our own language.

If into the solidarity of three principles on a horizontal level, this is important, we also introduce their even combinations, then things, symbols and rules become terribly entwined: we tend towards the principle of the ethos of recognition and recognition of what is ethical (which is not the same), towards the beauty of ethos and ethical beauty, towards the recognition of beauty and the beauty of telling things apart. So much about the horizontal axis of communication.

But in order to set up communication, the vertical axis is more important in the structuring of the data of consciousness. We are delving into the deep strata of consciousness, delving into the deepest strata of our ego, but the delving of the ego into the super-conscious is completely different from delving into the subconscious and its formalised landing on the level of the everyday superficial consciousness of our ego.

In this way, following this analytical entanglement, we again arrive at the fact that integral communication cannot be set up, neither exactly nor analytically, because it is incomprehensible to reason, when it touches the sphere of synthetic reason and we again abandon ourselves solely to »feeling – intuition«.

If in contrast with us, linguists believe that the language is alive, then they are probably thinking of this transformation of dead symbols, which are revived by consciousness, the spirit. We can easily agree with such a thought as it is only symbolic. But we cannot agree with the thought that man, who is a being of reason, could think with words and sentences. It is not possible to think so slowly, nor to speak, write, sing, play or paint so fast. If such, completely formalised thinking were at all possible, it would be dead. Although thought is already the dying of consciousness (Plato in Symposium), it is nevertheless infinitely more alive than language, this world of dead symbols. An utterly formalised message would not communicate anything except a mountain of letters and heaps of paper and sounds devoid of meaning. It would appear that our civilisation wants to approach this state as far as is possible. Expressed symbolically, the language cannot establish a dictate to the spirit of language, nor can reason do the same for the mind.

If this nevertheless keeps happening so frequently, it happens simply because the elephant, who is strong, teaches the sparrow to fly and on top of that the nightingale to sing. The elephant is joined by smaller animals that have a thicker skin.

The key to every form of communication is inner speech (endophasia). As children we began to grow ashamed of it and adults taught us polite and empty external speech, which means so very little. All the same, we now and again find ourselves secretly talking to ourselves and strangely – we then also hear other people.

In this way I can also translate Henri Bergson if I do not want to be just a mechanical translator, in relation to my structure of consciousness; its text is only a guide for me telling me which way to direct my thoughts, how I will deepen the ideas I understand or, in other words, along which corridors of consciousness I will walk, for the thoughts of every person go their own ways and if I nevertheless allow myself to be guided by someone, then that person is so close to me, and if I do not let someone guide me and when I do not let them guide me, that person is foreign to me. But we are always direct and genuine in relation to the structure of our consciousness, it is the only one we know. And this was Bergson’s situation, when he thought his essay, firstly in relation to the structure of his consciousness. And from there, from where he knows, we also know, and it is only for this reason that every communication is possible. But let us not forget – we are talking about the direct facts of consciousness.

The introduction to the attempt to present Bergson’s thought is a little lengthy because I want to use it to achieve communication which will surpass purely formal, logical deliberation. Above all I am not having a discussion with him but am agreeing with him, trying to harmonise with him. I would say that my approach to his thought is not critical or oppositional – something I am much more used to – but expressly affirmative. It is affirmative because I have nothing to refute, and again this is connected with what is essential, and I have chosen for the presentation that which is essential for me in Henri Bergson’s thought, and by no means do I believe that it must be essential for him or that it should be equally essential for anyone else. I must now try to present this briefly using his words, and before that with my own words:

The states of consciousness are finished reality that can be verified by everyone, they are a priori facts. That means they have a greater certainty and can be more directly verified than for example mediated data and information that we have not and cannot directly verify. There will be too many words said about such immediate data as it is. Although they are designated by the same words, their meaning and origin are completely different; and above all there is unverifiable data, there is data from conviction and also their certainty is certainty from conviction. Intuition penetrates deeper into states of consciousness than analytical reason can ever do.

Freedom is a key fact of consciousness, it is an idea, a concept, a value. Freedom cannot be defined. Values are states of consciousness that are essential for it, values orientate consciousness. Values are immediate states of consciousness, they are entities of the spirit, they are what the spirit is. We could say that they are the ethical component of ideas or the ethical component of »aesthetic values«. Their structure consists of two subjects: from our deeper ego – our self and our we, the effect of our I on our we being relatively small. It is the same in the inverse relation; we cannot accept our we if we do not pacify it with our personal I-ness. We accept our we in the individual variation as a personal value orientation. But the difference nevertheless remains. The values are structured by two subjects. They are structured by »my« I and »our« we. And this difference is fundamental for both. From self and one’s selfness, man cannot achieve individuality as far as he is an irreducible being. But there also remains the general validity of our values otherwise our I would not recognise them as such. It is another thing if I say that I structure values myself and they are structured for me by others because then I think about my own superficial, everyday I, the value system of this reduced I – the ego, and the institutional, socially valid value system (which I dealt with in the book Treatise on Freedom or the values of the system 4).

Out of all the values, orientations of the spirit or soul – I do not know why this symbol should be semantically devaluated and reduced – after all freedom has a special status. It is so difficult to express it with a symbol. It is so full or so empty a word: freedom. But we are certain that the deeper we penetrate into the state of consciousness, the fuller its meaning, the closer we are to its essence, and we know that it is connected with all values, ideas and that their depth changes their meaning, gives them colour and tone and meaning.



Comment by Shus: Shus was not very satisfied with the above introduction; he would have things to add here and there, Henri would no doubt have even more to say, but he abstained from making any commentary. Especially because this should be followed by Shus’ résumé from Bergson’s Essay on Immediate Data of Consciousness 3.

(It would by no means be appropriate to shorten the résumé and it is too long to present in its entirety here; it will appear in the sequel to Endophasia III and it appeared in Revija SRP 39/40, 2000).

In it Henri speaks for himself! 


Of course Henri does not answer to résumés and Shus has the impression that something essential is missing; he must ask him about something that he keeps thinking about.)



(as if he heard him) Why are you so agitated by the question of death – the mortality of the soul? (as if he heard him) Why are you so agitated by the question of death – the mortality of the soul?


The closer it is, the more it agitates us.


Is this because of fear – a lack of courage, or is it more curiosity? For if it is the former that predominates, then you are distancing yourself from knowledge, but if it is the latter then you may well fail to hit upon the meaning of your existence.


It seems to me that it is both, sometimes one, sometimes the other; they permeate each other. I am really not sure regarding this.


What are you not sure about? Be more precise!


I mean regarding the question, does the soul retain its individuality after death?


What else could it retain?


It would really be hard for me to find anything else that could be more essential.


Curiosity is generally a positive characteristic, that I must say. But I am surprised that you are so concerned about life after death and hardly concerned about what is within your reason’s reach and what is in fact the whole meaning of an individual’s existence.


Yes, that is really strange, now I think it originates from curiosity. The desire for knowledge beyond what is within reach is greater than the desire for knowledge which is within reach, is so wonderful – and is in itself a miracle.


Overtaking destroys knowledge.


I go astray – get completely lost, then I return to the correct idea: »the correct idea is like a medium level between knowledge and lack of knowledge.«


You go back to Socrates and Plato and your interlocutors outside time. At the same time you have withheld or tried to conceal both interlocutors that were the most important for you.


I only had access to the writers of the two original gnostic gospels, John the Baptist and John the Evangelist, via an unknown intermediary; I could only converse with an unknown recorder couldn’t I? So where did he get his knowledge from?


Do you mean to say that for you this unknown recorder has understood the truth and even more than the truth: he has understood knowledge from gnosis or gnosis directly – two different words for the same miracle; he recorded it in such a way that you can say with certainty that this is a miracle for you.


However, the message is ciphered, it is not easy to decipher his recording. What is even stranger – where did I get my previous knowledge from, without which I would have neither found, nor understood the meaning of the message, let alone that I could have understood it in its overall appearance. I will never unravel how I actually got to them.


Did you try?


Countless times. An ordinary explanation for how I happened upon John’s apocalypse (that is the Gospel according to John), would be enough for most people; there is a logic to the way the analyses, research reports, discussions, treatises and then »apocalypse« follow each other. But in truth there is no logical connection, or legality or urgency in this succession.


And how was it in reality?


In reality it was completely different. My sailing yacht Ariadne was moored in the town of Piran on the Adriatic coast. One evening before I went to sleep I said to myself: »Tonight I will ask myself. If They exist, then I will dream about Them tonight; I want to know Their value system.«


And to this day you know neither who They are nor what is their »system«.


I only know, and that with certainty, that this is not the system. It is something that is more than any system I know.


And this knowledge is not exactly small, but do not neglect facts such as the brainwaves of the intuition of reason.


Thank you, Henri, it is just that your advice does not in any way quench my curiosity regarding Them.


By the way, you did not talk directly with Socrates either, you could only really talk with Plato; you do not converse directly with me either. You yourself are the intermediary, even if rather solitary. The answer to your question is: previous knowledge is not previous, more precisely, there is no such knowledge. Knowledge is in duration.


It is difficult for me to understand. In that case I am not talking with interlocutors outside time? Am I only talking with their thoughts, ideas, values and also appear to touch upon their feelings? But there are too many of these strange coincidences that I could accept them just so as possible explanations.


(roguishly) This »but« of yours is definitely not the appropriate phrase. So you accidentally opened my essay on page 102 and the letter accidentally on the Evangelist John. Also all the other important decisions in your life appear to you to be more or less coincidental.

(then more seriously) Regarding these coincidences and all the others that were truly important for you, I must say that there really are many of them and they really are enigmatic. Did they at least make you happy?


They completely overcame me. And as I have already said, and what is funny – some of them have moved me to tears. It now sometimes seems to me that I could not do it alone... Without all these coincidences I could not hear you in my inner speech. I also hoped to be able to establish communication with at least some individuals in our we-ness, which I could not otherwise do.


Of course it is not good to succumb to sentimental reminiscences but now and again it can be encouraging for the odd person. But my prior knowledge is neither a priori nor a posterior as they are both lasting. The real world is in duration – accessible with the intuition of reason:

»May it be enough if we say that the reckless violence with which we take sides (orientate ourselves) in certain questions, proves to a large extent that our reason has instincts: how could we otherwise imagine these instincts, if not with flight, which is common to all our ideas and values, i.e. with common permeation.« (64)


The world of shadows only seems to be clearer and more understandable. By the way, Socrates’ death does not appear to me to be in accordance with my conception of him, it seems to me that it rather reflects Plato’s idea of the exaltation of the state. In my humble opinion Socrates would have met with death (drunk the hemlock) for completely different reasons.


Which ones?


The very opposite ones, out of disappointment with the world of shadows, especially the state (institution, system). Perhaps in order to have a more correct conception of his death it would be necessary to add that Socrates desire it out of curiosity, out of a strong desire to gain knowledge about the beyond.


Individuality outside time is somewhat different from in the world of shadows; it is completely unique. Isn’t it?


This doubt is really gnawing at me.


Doubt is a good assistant, it is your defence against naivety and it would be difficult for anyone to reproach you for it. As for immediate data: it is not a matter of how or how much you have understood; what is important is have you lived them.












An attempt to affirm immediate date of consciousness according to Henri Bergson

from the »Essay on immediate data of consciousness« 



May it suffice if we say that the reckless violence with which we take sides in certain matters proves to a large extent that our reason has instincts: how could we otherwise imagine these instincts if not with flight, which is common to all our ideas, values, i.e. with common permeation.

Henri Bergson


Translating titles is a sensitive affair that is subject to the most varied intentions. But we could for example quite easily replace an essay with a discussion for those that love discussions and already understand it as a discussion of the idea of duration and the idea of freedom. A somewhat freer variation of individual symbols of the title could be for example as follows: That which is denoted by the word »immediate«, could be labelled as: genuine, simultaneous; the word »data« could be replaced with the words: information, facts or even foundations; and »consciousness« with psyche, soul, spirit, I-ness, self-ness, and so on. In so varied an important composed symbol as the title we could make up interesting titles by combining individual symbols. Well, reading the essay places things back in their place and with some titles the readers could be particularly disappointed, for example those who would like to know if man has a soul or not; or those who are looking for spirituality only in books; or those who see solely materialised, objectivised consciousness, only the one that exists in exterior symbols when it is not really even there yet, and so on. But we must be clear about one thing: what is forbidden for analytical experts is not forbidden for readers. Readers freely and automatically translate symbols into symbols that suit them and they also do this when they read in their own language, and no intelligent author will prevent them from doing this, instead feeling honoured by the variation and multitude of meanings; he knows that words in themselves are dead and wants to communicate with what they denote. /Introduction: Rajko Shushtarshich/




Later note: Even in this introduction Shus abstained from making any comment.

His intermediate commentaries in presenting Bergson’s thoughts are purely parallel brainwaves of the intuition of the mind, the plan of many later endophasal conversations with him. What is essential is what Henri says about himself!
















Henri Bergson






»We can now formulate our understanding of freedom.

We name freedom the relationship of the concrete I and the act carried out by the same I. This relationship cannot be defined precisely because we are free. It is the thing that is analysed not the growth: it is the dimension that is dissected and not the duration. Or alternatively, if there is no way you can stop the analysis, you can subconsciously turn growth into the thing and duration into dimension. Except by dissecting concrete time you are already unfolding its moments into homogenous space; instead of the fact, which is being created, you are setting the completed fact which you have already begun by in some way freezing the activity of our I, spontaneity is in some way transformed into inertia and freedom into necessity before your very eyes. – That is why every definition of freedom will in the end corroborate determinism.« (102)

The key thought is a priori knowledge, the affirmation: »we are free«. You cannot reach it through analysis, nor can it be proven. But if our reason persists in doing this, it must end in some form of determinism, it will be corroborated and its lack of freedom will be proven. However, our reason is not analytical; it is integrally synthetic and cannot be satisfied with this dictate of reason. It makes it possible for us to directly check the state of consciousness and in the deepest states of our consciousness it understands freedom to be an inevitable fact.

If we play with our reason and claim the opposite: we are not free; everyday life, social practise keep proving this to us. As we can see, there are no problems, our reason puts up with this a priori claim as well as the first one. We have relinquished freedom in favour of others, we will have all the support of the others. Social systems are value-based on the fiction of social determinism. There remains only the question of your ego: have you personally been able to accept this relinquishment? This is a question of your mind and not your reason. There remains a suspicious question: why are the activities of social systems so unpredictable, where does their freedom come from?

Instead of my I there is our societal we. And again we can only wonder at the universality of Bergson’s comprehension of freedom. May it not bother you if in my illustration or generalisation of the comprehension of freedom I will pass more freely from the I to the we (i.e. social freedom). Now we can formulate the conception of our freedom.

We name our freedom the relationship of the concrete we and the acts which we carry out (which our we carries out). And this relationship of our we-dom, this social freedom cannot be defined in free societies because we are free. In unfree societies it can be defined of course. You will say: »Every society says for itself that it is the freest.« However, we will say: »Any yet there are significant differences between them – societies and us – individuals.« A free individual can comprehend it directly while an unfree individual comprehends it indirectly, as it is passed on to him by dominant propaganda systems. We therefore analyse social relationships, objectivised and reduced roles and not free people who cannot be analysed. As we have seen in previous chapters, we analyse social achievements, and not social growth; its institutionalisation and not liberation.

And if we simply cannot stop with real social analyses of human development in which the man is an object, we subconsciously turn growth into social achievements and our free future into illusory utopia. When we want to dissect concrete time we unfold its living moments in a limited space. Instead of life, which is being created, you are setting us completed ideals, finally achieved targets as facts. When you began with this you in some way froze the activities of our we; the spontaneity of the nation, the people, was converted before your very eyes into the inertia of mass and social freedom into social constraint, necessity. That is why every definition of social freedom would affirm and serve social determinism. Planned freedom will end in some form of integralism, totalitarianism, in any case in some –ism.

And if there is no way we can stop with real social analyses – we analyse the quantity of life and not its quality, in which the man is not a free being but is a thing, an object of an alienated we –, we subconsciously convert social growth into social development, spontaneous unification into institutional hierarchy, into expansion and domination of the effective, achievement oriented, reduced man. By wanting to dissect man into a group of partial roles, you determine him into an object appropriate for statistical and computer processing. Or you can do this so that you raise these articles to the level of human values, the computer to the level of human reason. Institutions and their central register do not need man, they only use his part, the one that the computer can register, the one with which the institution can manipulate. Instead of life, which is being created, you are setting up a value society, its values, goals as facts without which civilisation cannot exist. When you began with this, you froze the creativity of our we, spontaneity turned before your very eyes into unstoppable inertia, freedom into unreflected, meaningless efficiency, the discipline of robots. Such a definition of freedom will end in false freedom, which will be replaced by the dangerous and lazy comfort of some socio-political and economic order which contains everything: all the more artificial and imposed and false, as false freedom, and this smells of stagnation, the death of all that is alive.


In Bergson’s conception of freedom there is exceptional capacity for multiple meaning; one of the meanings also reflects the answer to the unsolved question of all those who proclaimed the value (idea) of freedom for the realisation of great goals, except that they forgot the unfinished, lasting liberation of our I and our we. You can see social movements and their end in institutional spontaneity. You can see George Orwell, Yevgeny Zamyatin, Aldous Huxley. You can see, I doubt that it can be overlooked, how early Edvard Kocbek saw this – a concrete participant in our movement for the freedom of a concrete we; how it was in vain that he drew attention to institutional spontaneity, you can see the cost of this failure to see. Is not this same thought about the idea of freedom a guide to Kocbek’s warnings when he so quickly began to have serious concerns about our we, the spontaneity of the people accompanying the transformation of the movement into an organisation, the bureaucratisation of power, its alienation, the rift and stratification of our concrete we. Are these not the same worries which so early on disturbed Yevgeny Zamyatin in his novel »We« and George Orwell in his vision of our year »1984«.

What allows Bergson’s thought such a broad filling up with meaning, with meanings? Its universality? Its depth? Its vivacity? Does it contain a symbolic representation of the true essence of freedom? I could of course continue with questions but it is not necessary. Our reason is not analytic but synthetic. Without intuition or at least without limiting thinking, this interpretation of mine will seem just like a play on words and a construct.

The value of freedom is not anything when you touch it and when it touches you and when we touch it, use it, and it eludes us, takes its revenge on us, shows us that it can neither be possessed, determined, distributed or defined.

This thought of Bergson’s is a hermeneutical circle which brings us back to our starting-point – to freedom. And so every limitation of freedom leads back to its definition. So the definition of freedom is not an innocent thing, it is the original act which leads us to determinism and from it to integralism, totalitarianism, liberalism, –isms, which man, who is a free being and a being of reason, resists from the depths of his consciousness. Are we even surprised that the ideology whose name shows that it is based on the value of freedom, with the »liberal definition of freedom«, with the definition of our freedom has led to what is the most perverted form of government so far: »voluntary slavery«. This is liberalism or neoliberalism, whatever you want to call it.

»Freedom is therefore a fact and amongst the facts we are discovering there is no clearer more certain fact. All the difficulties of this problem and the problem itself stem from there where because the idea of freedom cannot be expressed in a language into which it evidently cannot be translated.« (103)

Freedom is inexpressible. We cannot relinquish it. To abandon it to political speech, the language, we cannot do this. If our ego relinquishes it in favour of our we, it has therefore deprived us of it. Our we is faced with the same problem as our I faced earlier. /Interpretation/commentary: Rajko Shushtarshich/



as soon as our consciousness utters them:




Completely pure duration is a form (of consciousness),

which is taken by the succession of our states of consciousness,

when our ego abandons itself to life,

when it no longer wishes to separate present and past states.

That is why it does not feel the need to

completely drown (lose itself) in sensuality

or in the idea pervades us,

because then it would stop lasting.

It does not even feel the need,

to forget past states (souls, selfs):

it is enough when it remembers them,

it does not connect these states to the present state like a point to point,

but only pervades them with it,

as happens when we remember the notes of a melody,

one would say melted together in harmony.

Could we not say that these notes, when they change,

we feel them all, each next one in all the others,

that their entirety is like some living being,

who integral parts, although separated,

are pervaded with the very activity of their solidarity? (49)

Such is, I do not doubt it, the presentation,

which some being would create for itself regarding duration,

in itself identical and changing at the same time,

a being which would have no idea about space. (50)





In one word: our ego touches the outside world with its surface;

our feelings, which follow each other,

although they drown in each other,

retain something of the mutuality of the outside world,

which materially marks their causes;

that is why our superficial spiritual life

unravels in a uniform environment,

without this manner of submission causing some considerable effort.

Meanwhile the symbolic meaning of this notion is becoming all the clearer,

the more we delve into the depth of consciousness:

the inner I - self,

that which feels and is enthusiastic,

which considers and decides,

that I is power,

its states change and authentically pervade each other,

but they suffer deep changes when we separate them from each other,

in order to array them in space.

Well, as this deeper self together with the superficial ego creates

one and the same personality,

it seems that both unavoidably last in the same way. (60)





Little by little our feelings become distinct

like the external causes that have aroused them,

and with them emotions and thoughts and feelings,

that are simultaneous with them. (60)





Consciousness, tortured by the insatiable desire to differentiate (to define),

replace reality with the symbol,

now only perceives reality indirectly through the symbol.

As the ego that is broken and divided in this way much better

meets the demands of social life and especially language,

consciousness gives such an ego an advantage and gradually loses

the essence of the ego (the essential self). (61)





For this fundamental self to return, in the form that the pure consciousness would recognise, it needs a strong analytical effort with which the internal and living facts of consciousness separate from their image (the symbol), first broken and then objectivised in a uniform (homogenous) space.

In other words, our perceptions, observations, feelings, emotions and thoughts appear to us in a dual light: in one they are clear, precise, but shapeless (impersonal); in the other they are mixed up, confused, extremely, unendingly changing, inconstant and unutterable (not from matter).

Language could not even name them without in this way fixing their changeability, nor could language conform them to its banal form, if it had not beforehand led them into an area that is common to all.

As though the objects that I was constantly observing – they could not stop forming images in my soul –, at last took something of me, my conscious being. Like me, they too lived and grew old with me. No, this is not a simple hallucination...

It is this way because our external and social life is for us practically more important than our inner and individual being. We instinctively desire to unite and condense our impressions, in order to be able to express them in language.

What happens then is that we mix feeling, which is in lasting being, with its interior but constant object and especially with the word, which expresses this object. As the transitional duration of our ego stabilises with its projection in a uniform space, in the same way our ever-changing impressions wind themselves around the external object that has produced them, appropriating its outline and immobility. (61)





Actually there are neither identical feelings nor multiple tastes; feelings and tastes appear to me like things, as soon as I discharge them and name them, while the human soul contains hardly anything but growth.

Language not only convinces us about the changelessness of feelings, but now and again it deludes us as regards the characteristic of the felt emotion.

In brief, the clearly outlined word is a brutal word that gathers everything that exists. Especially when we consider this formlessness in the impressions of human beings, it destroys or at least hides the most gentle and never same impressions of our individual consciousness. In order to reply with the same measure, we should express ourselves with precise words; but these words, hardly yet formed, always turn against the feelings to which they owe their existence. Invented in order to testify that feeling does not last, they force upon it their own durability. (62)





Nowhere is this disastrous destruction of direct consciousness as visible as in the phenomena of emotions. Passionate love, deep melancholy flood our soul: there are thousands of different states, which blend together, pervade each other without any clear outlines, without the smallest tendency to repeat itself; that is the cost of their originality. They already become disfigured when in their chaotic mass we develop a numbered multitude: and what will happen mutually divided we develop them in a uniform milieu, which we will now call space or time, as you wish? A moment ago each of them was borrowing an indefinable colour from its surroundings: now we have it colourless, and ready to accept a name. (63)





The feeling itself is a being which lives and develops and is therefore constantly changing; otherwise how could it gradually lead us to form a resolution? Our resolution would be immediately taken. But it lives because the duration in which it develops is a duration whose moments, permeate one another. By separating these moments from each other, by spreading out time in space, we have caused this feeling to lose its life and its colour. Hence, we are now standing before our own shadow: we believe that we have analysed our feeling, while we have really replaced it by a juxtaposition of lifeless states which can be translated into words, and each of which constitutes the common element, the impersonal residue, of the impressions felt in a given case by the whole of society. And this is why we reason about these states and apply our simple logic to them: having set them up as genera by the mere fact of having isolated them from one another, we have prepared them for use in some future deduction. Now, if some bold

novelist, tearing aside the cleverly woven curtain of our conventional ego, shows us under this appearance of logic a fundamental absurdity, under this juxtaposition of simple states an infinite permeation of a thousand different impressions which have already ceased to exist the instant they are named, we commend him for having known us better than we knew ourselves. Encouraged by him, we have put aside for an instant the veil which we interposed between our consciousness and ourselves. (63)





Let it be enough to say that the impulsive zeal with which we take sides on certain questions shows how our intellect has its instincts and what can an instinct of this kind be if not an impetus common to all our ideas, i.e. their very interpenetration? (64)






The beliefs to which we most strongly adhere are those of which we should find it most difficult to give an account, and the reasons by which we justify them are seldom those which have led us to adopt them. In a certain sense we have adopted them without any reason, for what makes them valuable in our eyes is that they match the colour of all our other ideas, and that from the very first we have seen in them something of ourselves. Hence they do not take in our minds that common looking form which they will assume as soon as we try to give expression to them in words; and, although they bear the same name in other minds, they are by no means the same thing. (64)





Not all our ideas, however, are thus incorporated in the fluid mass of our conscious states.

Many float on the surface, like dead leaves on the water of a pond: the mind, when it thinks them over and over again, finds them ever the same, as if they were external to it. Among these are the ideas which we receive ready made, and which remain in us without ever being properly assimilated, or again the ideas which we have omitted to cherish and which have withered in neglect. If, in proportion as we get away from the deeper strata of the self, our conscious states tend more and more to assume the form of a numerical multiplicity, and to spread out in a homogeneous space, it is just because these conscious states tend to become more and more lifeless, more and more impersonal. Hence we need not be surprised if only those ideas which least belong to us can be adequately expressed in words: only to these, as we shall see, does the associationist theory apply. (64)

I will end here my selection of Bergson’s thoughts. If I refer to his thought then it is pointless for me to substantiate or explain this choice too much because the more I did it, the more I would prove that I took his thoughts to be perfected facts, i.e. dead thoughts that I am merely recapitulating. I will have to take at least some risk.





Oh, I don’t have time, what time is it?

What day is it today?

I must hand in the report by 24:00h…

Institutions – systems govern us with the reductionism of the role – man is narrowed down to a role in an institution, a basic entity in the system. Common values are defined, narrowed in this way they change into institutional values – value systems. Instead of value systems we are dominated by systems of social stratification; the legitimacy of the system is dominated by the economic value orientation, liberalism or neoliberalism is now the ideology that rules the planet. But the value symbols remain the same, only their meaning has been turned around and twisted.

It is true, we cannot even imagine human development, the development of civilisation – systems without these value changes. But time is a universal system or invention of civilisation, which fascinates us even more. The counting of time — governing! One year, one month, one day: 24 hours, 0.00 minutes, 0.00 seconds…, on the other side of the continuum: decades, centuries, millennia… When the individual accepts the system time into his consciousness he can be measurably controlled and his regulation, including human development, is predictable as far as the level of fascination, or the level of our conviction. However, there is no time in the consciousness of the individual, there is only duration! (Further down I will mention some reasons for measuring time.)

In the unencumbered consciousness of the individual, the noose of time is completely different. From no time – its self-awareness until the infinity of time – eternity (0 — ?). The latter can neither prove nor deny, nor define it as death. However, the latter manipulation is very important for the system (sub-system) engineers of souls – death merchants. The individual does not remember the most important events, experiences, findings in his life according to chronological or spatial classification; this is done by »his« convinced trivial consciousness. I will repeat In other words:

»By wanting to dissect concrete time, we unfold its living moments in a restricted space. Instead of life, which is realised, you set us accomplished ideals, finally reached targets as facts. When you began with this, you in some way froze the activity of our we; the spontaneity of the nation, the people turned before your very eyes into an inertia of mass and social freedom into social constraint, urgency.

When you began with this, you froze the creativity of our we; spontaneity turned before your very eyes into unstoppable inertia, freedom into unreflected, meaningless effectiveness, the discipline of robots. Fake freedom has replaced the dangerous and lazy comfort of some socio political and economic order which contains everything: increasingly artificial and imposed and this smells of death, the death of everything that is alive.«

The deepest states of consciousness are in common permeation and are in duration. When consciousness is in duration it is permeated with eternity. Duration is the present in synchronicity – the eternity of the soul to put it in different words. For Bergson »permeation« is a strong, the fullest symbol. As though matter were only permeated by ether; this is roughly how the spirit or spirituality permeates the entire consciousness – the soul. We could also say: consciousness is the permeation, the growing together of our thoughts, ideas, values – basically all the facts of consciousness together with all our being. When Henri Bergson talks to us about the unutterable, some thorough philosophers believe he is contradiction with himself. How is it possible to talk about the unutterable? And yet this is what he talks about most beautifully, and when he talks he is more a poet than a philosopher and that is why I have chosen some of his poems.

Someone could ask me what this choice has to do with values, value orientations and value systems? Then in the previous seven chapters perhaps I did not set out clearly enough the fundamental dilemmas of our consciousness: either the tractate on freedom or the value system of strong institutions. In brief: freedom is a value which is particularly important for the value system. If we have understood freedom to be an immediate data of consciousness, we will do the same for all other common human values. Values orientate us in our deepest decisions, and on the surface of consciousness they substantiate our convictions, which all of society has accepted at a certain moment in time; in other words, they orientate us with socially valid orientations. In both cases the words and symbols for the values are the same, only the same words have meanings that are more different than almost anywhere else.

If you still insist that Bergson is not a poet, you cannot however deny that he did not know how poesis penetrates from the world of shadows into the depth of the soul. For admirers of clear analytic logic and explanatory methods in discussions this thought will seem excessive. But it is the interaction of poets, novelists, discussants and essayists (in one journal for example) that acknowledges the power of poetry, surpasses the reductionism of logic and enables an encounter with one’s own self.

For an individual it is therefore essential to differentiate the thoughts (feelings, evaluations) that we think (feel, value), from those that we summarise or are forced upon us by dominant propagandas in the system of »impersonal sediments of impressions that all of society has taken on in a given example«. This is therefore the difference between the poetry of reason and the trivial superficial awareness of practical reason. What can the party do (in Orwell’s »1984«)? It prohibits individual love, thereby opening the doors to the hatred of the masses. They love only him, the one and only, we can say that he consumed all our love. The present-day dominant ideology of liberalism frees us of loving our »big brother«, but also love for wisdom in the name of one’s »liberal freedom«, which is actually »voluntary slavery«. At the outset, i.e. in the first socialising or educational institutions with accelerated differentiated education, education is used to suppress the actual freedom of the individual, free thought must be converted into stratified slogans – the moulds of their status expression.

»Individual training« and education now mean the categorical – stratified socialisation of individuals. »Free time« means increasingly typified – stratified free time activities: hobbies, holidays, weekends, etc, to suit the system, its agencies and institutions. Perhaps the entrapment of individuals in the noose of time is nowhere more visible than in this very dimension – »free time slavery to the system«. The ruling ideology is with increasing speed pushing down individuals into precisely classified masses – strata. How absurd: a mass of individuals. Even the word individual has given way to its antipode. That is why I prefer the word individuum. A multitude of individua? It does not work. At least not yet.

When Bergson talks about the instinct of reason – the key marker for value definition –, this symbol is as important for him as the categorical imperative (of practical reason) is for Kant. If we were to look for an analogon for the instinct of reason we could replace it with the categorical imperative or the intuition of reason or with a completely random premonition of the conscience; and we would not change anything fundamental in the revived thought of the intuitive philosopher and poet Henri Bergson. If we at least complied with that – of everything that speaks to us in favour of immediate data of consciousness, that what is essential is the meaning of the idea, the value and not the symbol – only a marker, that it is therefore pointless to extol the term, which in itself is dead. Considering the emphasis of the meaning in the vertical axis, I would prefer to call it the intuition of reason, after all Bergson is above all an intuitive thinker and speaks to us about the deepest states of our consciousness, spirit and soul. His thoughts and emotions are alive and are developing: »they live and develop because the endlessness in which they develop, the duration whose moments permeate each other: dividing up these moments amongst themselves with the unwinding of time in space, we have deprived this sensation of its vividness and colour. Now, see, we are faced with our own shadow: we think we have analysed our emotions, feelings, but actually we have only replaced them with a succession of inert states that can be translated into words. These are states of which each one means (forms) a common element, an impersonal deposit of impressions that have in a given example been accepted by all of society. « (63)

»We have in some way accepted them without reason because their value in our eyes makes their spilling over suit the general colour of all our thoughts; the fact that we have immediately seen in them something of our own. That is why thoughts in our spirit do not have that banal tone they usually pick up as soon as we say them in words, even though others call them with the same name, these thoughts are not the same thoughts.« (64)

We can check his thoughts directly – in comparison with the thoughts of many other amateurs of wisdom – we need not believe anything, we need not suppose anything for immediate data of consciousness can be directly verified by anyone.



Translated from Slovenian by Marko Petrovich










Previous publications:

1 Étienne de La Boétie, Prostovoljno suzhenjstvo /Propagandni dodatek – Étienneja de La Boétiea/, Revija SRP 1/2, 1993

2 Rajko Shushtarshich, Endofazija II – O narodu iz metastvarnosti, Revija SRP 29/30, 1999; 2a Rajko Shushtarshich, Endofazija I, Revija SRP 11/12 1995)

3 Henri Bergson, Esej o neposrednih dejstvih zavesti; /3a Rajko Shushtarshich, Poizkus afirmacije neposrednih dejstev zavesti po Henriju Bergsonu iz »Eseja o neposrednih dejstvih zavesti«/, Revija SRP 39/40, 2000

[Naslov originala: Henri Bergson: ESSAI SUR LES DONNÉES IMMÉDIATES DE LA CONSCIENCE uporabljen prevod: Henri Bergson: Ogled o neposrednim chinjenicama svesti; prevedel Feliks Pashiæ, Beograd 1978]

4 Rajko Shushtarshich, Traktat o Svobodi ali vrednote sistema, Ljubljana (1992, 2001, 2006)




















Individuality of the LiVeS Journal



Guidelines of the LiVeS Journal are

the three values of the orientation of the individuum,

that irrelevant shred in the system of institutions.



These values are: Liberty, Verity, and Spirit

Each of them is important in its separate way,

the infusion of these values is important.



This is also the intention of the LiVeS Journal editorial board,

which is published in an updated version of Bohorichica the primary Slovenian alphabet,

the argumentation behind which is presented in Zbornik 2001 Bohorichica.