Two of the main concepts in Deleuze’s philosophy are representation and repetition. These words are used as synonyms in our normal context. When Deleuze opposes representation, repetition is one of his buzzword. But he gives repetition a meaning which is different from the dictionary meaning. I will write on that later, else it would become too technical. [But atleast keep in mind they are different]. I quote from a book on him;
The developed world of representation is a world governed by laws. The deeper, sub-representative world of repetition is an artistic or aesthetic domain in which there are as yet no laws
When You look at people like Jesus or Buddha, they have gone beyond the realm of laws. Their insights were not just new laws, but an entering to a realm beyond the laws which is eternally (used it provocatively) dynamic and creative. When Jesus gives the commandment of loving the enemy, of being in service to others, they are not just laws (many of us consider it so); but they are deeper insights from a realm many of us don’t dare to approach. Similar things could also be spoken of the insights of Buddha on compassion and Nirvana. I think the ‘real’ prophets and pioneers are also people who have untapped into that realm, which gives you the authenticity to go beyond the laws.
These could look similar to the concepts of ‘Charism and institutionalization of Charism in Weber’ and dangers connected to institutionalization. Though they are similar, Deleuzian concepts are richer.
As we celebrate International Human Rights Day (dec 10) and preparing for Christmas (birth of liberator and saviour), it is good to see the laws within our political, social, cultural and most importantly religious settings. Many of us would agree that some of them are oppressive. But Overcoming them is not an easy task. It requires a dynamic spirit and courage to get into that realm beyond the laws to call for a radical re-beginning… which is a repetition in the Deleuzian sense.