Posthuman Exercises #1-7, 2020/2021

Posthuman Exercises are a series of seven meditations designed and performed by Chrismaria Pfeifer. They guide the meditators beyond human nature, which is invited by other natures to join them. The exercises are minimalist and based on mental and sensory elements that incorporate storytelling and silence. The duration is between 5-6 minutes and no special preparation is required. To do the exercise, find a place where you can sit and/or stretch out and relax without being disturbed. Take a few moments before and after meditation.

Posthuman Exercise #6 “Compost Humans” was part of the online symposium Magical Cohabitations at Akademie Schloss Solitude in March 2021. The series will be published in a special edition by mid 2021, together with inserts by the art writer Edith Lázár, accessible online.

Edith Lázár on #6

What makes a sense of belonging? Is it a matter of feeling that enfolds oneself, or is it one of sharing? Think of all the invisible entities that already reside and grow inside and outside of our bodily-shelter. From the skin to the gut, where we place our beloved sensorial feelings and intuition, genuine terraformers continue their living: bacteria, imperceptible bugs, and other plant-like creatures. To experience these connections is to understand oneself in terms of the nutritional, metabolites, and affective needs of an eco-system. But such spatiality, the human as a pod or a place of growth, has haunted humans since the late 19th century as the primordial site for terrors and phobias. Thus, stepping into oneself as that place of growth seems no easy task, when in the back of the mind, the current sanitized culture continues its domesticating process.[1] Its body-product has for too long cluttered the vision and made from ‘microbes’ the reason for its coercive hand.

Then, let the soil linger on your skin for just a little while – and see where does it take you.

A traveler without boundaries is fluid, streaming in organisms, neuro-networks, and technologies. It has always been like this: bio-feedbacks are just nurturing spaces to grow. They rise ecosystems that don’t depend (as we seem to) on the ability to question why they exist; or cut-clear differences between an outside and an inside. They just merge. It’s a becoming, for an environment can bend our sensing nature in multiple directions, so our ways of thinking them.

[1] Beatriz Colomina & Mark Wigley, are we human?, 2016, p. 219.