Transmitting Culture: 3.


Hoofstuk 3 – The Exact Science of Angels


‘n Eerbiedwaardige Proto-Mediologie

In every written record that we can consult within the branch of Roman Catholic theology called angelology can be found the three properties of transmission as a historical process: first, a triadic structure that brings in a third mediating term, between a message’s emission and its reception; second, a structured order that makes organization synonymous with hierarchy; and third, a reversal scheme that switches passage into obstacle.

Ek dink al wat die outeur hier probeer sê is dat die studie van engelkunde nie eintlik is wat dit voorgee nie, en eintlik baie min met engele te make het maar meer met die boodskappe wat hulle bring.


All these have to do with the means of implementation and with getting messages across: clearing a path or road means giving thought to the bridge.

Until that time (Sigh of Him, face to face.) – Kafka’s ‘The Castle’ of course comes to mind – the supreme authority, inaccessible and impenetrable, expresses himself by surrogates speaking in his name, enigmatically.

The decrees of the Almighty are not issued in real time and like an open book. The take their course in a temporal progression for which nothing is played out ahead of time.

God’s absence-presence had to be bridged by an imagistic interface between invisible divinity and our downcast eyes of flesh and blood.

The one and only mediator that is the Christ had need of ministers and messangers, the couriers between high and low. Angels remained associated with all the sacraments of the faithful, with the church itself, and with each individual. The return of the angels is the return of the monotheistic repressed.

Hier wil gesê word dat engele as tussengangers gedien het en steeds doen. Wat ek aflei is dat daar ‘n tussenganger behoort te wees tussen die oorspronklike outeur, die bron, en die ontvang. Hierdie tussenganger maak die bron verstaanbaar vir die ontvanger en sonder die tussenganger (engel) sal die bron net onverstaanbare gibberish wees vir die ontvanger en hy/sy sal nie weet wat om te doen met die inligting nie.

Engele, teenwoordig!

Every property of the angelic body corporate was open to doubt by the doctors of the church except one: graduation into successive tiers, graduation as if into military echelons.

A tragic coincidence is that the operative mechanism carrying out conversion from one level of reality to another – here, from supernatural to natural – brings about subordination.

What matters is knowing not the thing of which each order is the image but the structure of an order repeated indefinitely “on earth as it is in heaven”.

Mediation is not horizontal, he glimpsed; every mediation straight away is termed a procession – either upward or downward (anagogic or paradosic).

Tradition becomes understandable as what is passed on through relay, from master to disciple, student to teacher, son to father, people to apostle.

If there is no hierarchy, God does not exist. But when hierarchy is present, God becomes inaccessible.

If, in the Greek language, “diabolical” is that which divides, while “symbolic” (sumballein) is that which unites, there are grounds for claiming that the transmission of the divine is structured diabolically.

To synthesize, the devil is not necessarily God’s other; he can be God exercising his power. The noise is in the message itself.

Reg, hierdie gedeelte vat noggals aan my. Eerstens noem Debray dat daar ‘n hemelse hirargie is wat insigself uitspeel oor die hele aarde heen, nie net in die engele nie, maar ook in die weermag en omtrent elke liewe sfere wat daar vandag is. Hirargie is orals. Telkens daarsonder kan ons nie. Hirargie is nodig volgens Debray sodat die boodskap van bo na onder herlei kan word soos wat ‘n aflos stokkie om die baan deur verskillende atlete na die wenpaal gedra word. Weereens kruip paradoks na vore want om die boodskap oor te dra moet die boodskap oorgegee word en onderbreking ondergaan. Nou dat ek daaraan dink, dalk soos wat jy ‘n video afneem op jou selfoon en dit met die wêreld wil deel. Jy neem die video, stoor dit op jou selfoon, laai dit op youtube, en finaal deel jy die link na jou youtube video. Die leertjie moet geklim word om die boodskap oor te dra.


And here is the third lesson: at every instant the angel can reverse his role into demon, the vector toward form a screen between, the channel obstruct. At the core of each Messiah (and not next to or against him) slumbers an Antichrist.

Whether one takes the angel for God or the vector for the message, both reflect the satanic side of communication societies brought out so ingeniously by Michel Serres.

A profane version of the angels’ fall, mediatic bottlenecks take place when the announcer promotes himself by public display or the official voice, instrument, or organ rebels against its designated function.

What renders the message possible also makes probable its perversion.

Satan is still an angel, however fallen and rebellious.

Evil, Good have the same origin.

Woman interposes as well between man and Satan, when she is named Eve, as she does between man and God, when she is named Mary.

One cannot manage all by oneself. Gates do not open without gatekeepers.

Hier kom die tragedie te voorskyn wanneer daar besef word dat elke engel (boodskapper) dit in hom het om ook ‘n demoon (een wat verdeel) te wees. Sodra die boodskapper ‘n liefde vir mag en aansien begin kweek raak hy ‘n verdeler en breek die band tussen die bron en die ontvanger heeltemal af deur homself ‘n nuwe bron te wil maak. Dit is dus ‘n gevaarlike taak met groot verantwoordelikheid en dissipliene daarmee saam om ‘n boodskapper te wees.


Dit was dan Hoofstuk 3 – The Exact Science of Angels


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