To fail to embed these notions within the self is to stand out. I recall an old Japanese saying--the nail that sticks out gets hammered down; and so it applies with even greater force through language to the meaning and value of interpretation (and the prescribed consequences such meaning and values produce). In the 19th century the societal expectation of horse beating requires little reaction; the act of embracing a beaten horse is a sign of mental illness--of a chasm between the individual and the societal expectation of individual application of interpretation to sign or act. That chasm requires policing--a stay in a mental institution in the late 19th century; a cocktail of medications in the 21st. Even to feel the pain of another suggests not so much an individuated projection of meaning beyond the societal, but instead a rebellion against the interpretant's judgement from within the societal sphere. One is not so much acting beyond the good and evil inherent in the rejected interpretation as one is engaging in the political act of seeking to change that interpretation--not only for the self but in its societal power.
Still ours is a project that is meant to break this circle--to find a place not constrained by assabiyah. might that require a break between meaning and language, between interpretation and communication? Can we find a space free of Flora's machine? Might we find the answer in notions of love of self; is the self possible only in the act of self love? That might provide a window onto the possibility of compassion--that love of others is possible only as an expression of self love. Thus, "suffering with" may be the consequence of, proceed only through, the love of the self. I suffer with the woman being kicked by street thugs because I suffer with her or because I love myself? We do not learn to love ourselves, we learn to love others; that is we learn the obligation of the self within a societal network of relations built on whatever constricts support societal cohesion--the family, the church, the village, the volk, the state. But love of others in this sense is little more than the learning of obligation to others built on the displacement of the self into the mass of others that constitute the community that share a language of mutual obligation that itself embeds the cohesive morality of the societal order. One must learn to displace oneself to live among others. We are trained to feel indignation for the suffering of others for the preservation of the group, even as we develop societal rules that constrain or manage those feeling. We are trained away from feeling indignation for the love of ourselves, and ourselves in others. This self love is not the hubris (ὕβρις) of the ancients, or the Christian sin of pride--both of which are societal constructs and dependent on the relationship between a false self interpretation and its projection outward--but a self love that frees the individual from the compulsion of external and of the societally communicative so that, for a moment at leats, neither interpretant nor action is a political calculation grounded in societal structures, but instead in the structures of the self. But to do this without becoming a monster, an individual unconstrained internally or externally? That requires another language, and an individual morality beyond that societally constructed, that is true to itself but in the world.