“Is not what Badiou calls the Event, at its most basic, the very rise of re-presentation or appearing out of the flat stupidity of being? So that the Event proper (the Truth-Event in Badiou’s sense) is the For-itself of the In-itself of appearing? Insofar as appearing is always appearing for a thought (for a thinking subject), we can go further and say that the rise of a thought as such is an Event—as Badiou likes to say, thought as such is communist.
The key question is thus: how is thought possible in a universe of matter, how can it arise out of matter? Like thought, the subject (Self) is also immaterial: its One-ness, its self-identity, is not reducible to its material support. I am precisely not my body: the Self can only arise against the background of the death of its substantial being, of what it is “objectively.” So, again, how can one explain the rise of subjectivity out of the “incomplete” ontology, how are these two dimensions (the abyss/void of subjectivity, the incompleteness of reality) to be thought together? We should apply here something like a weak anthropic principle: how should the Real be structured so that it allows for the emergence of subjectivity (in its autonomous efficacy, not as a mere “user’s illusion”)?”
Thus Žižek starts the final chapter of his forthcoming book. It is an age-old question of course, the question of the gap between the self as material being and the self as the nonmaterial thinking subject. Where is that gap? How do we fill that gap between what is and what might be, between our own limited materiality and the unbounded possibility of our nonmaterial thoughts. Part of the reason for the return of theology as a philosophical discipline is in so many ways about precisely this question. Žižek’s theological turn has been often criticised as one which takes the easy route of transcendence, of believing that there is something outside of material reality and it is here that the dispute between him, Meillassoux, Ray Brassier and other speculative materialists comes to the fore. As he puts it:
“It is at this precise point that Ray Brassier criticizes me for choosing the second “transcendental” option, unable as I am to think the Void of Being as such without subjectivity; from my standpoint, however, Brassier is here following Meillassoux who pays a fateful price for his suspension of the transcendental dimension—the price of a regression to a “naïve” ontology of spheres or levels in the style of Nicolai Hartmann: material reality, life, thought. A move which is to be avoided at all costs.
But as usual, this dispute misunderstands, I think, the nature of the transcendence which I think Žižek is asking us to consider. by eliding the difference between ontology and epistemology we arrive at a position of transcendental materialism. By this Žižek means that within the material real there is also space for a transcendental element which stands outside of the real and stands in for the unobtainable Real. As he puts it:
“The path to the In-itself leads through the subjective gap, since the gap between For-us and In-itself is immanent to the In-itself: appearance is itself ‘objective,’ therein resides is the truth of the realist problem of ‘how can we pass from appearance for-us to reality in-itself.'”
Thus the transcendence being talked of here is what Ernst Bloch called “transcendence without the transcendent”. The Real is not an inaccessible pre-existing Real, but rather is the product of the ongoing process of its own realisation. This brings us back to a faith in the autopoietic emergence of a different reality out of that which already exists. In this way transcendence is always already immanent within real existing conditions. This is of course a return to the theme of Aufhebung but this time instead of locating the transcendent within a Parmenedian universal totality which already pre-exists, we are asked to assume that it is the not yet-ness of transcendence which is the most important thing, rather than its inaccessibility. He maintains that dialectical materialism must do away with any naive belief in the existence of objective reality out there somewhere simply to be apprehended, rather he maintains that it is the gap between the different subjective positions on objective reality that is the real locus of the Real: “The ‘Real’ is not the inaccessible X, it is the very cause or obstacle that distorts our view on reality, that prevents our direct access to it. The real difficulty is to think the subjective perspective as inscribed in ‘reality’ itself.” Again, so far, so familiar.
But from this position Žižek goes on to maintain an adherence to the concept of truth within a grand narrative which takes him clearly outside of the post modernist universe. And this is his most direct criticism of Meillassoux, that there is truth in addition to and outside of knowledge. In dismissing the Transcendental as a “deceptive lure”, Žižek maintains, Meillasoux reverts to a limited materialism which can carry no message of active transformation. Žižek here is asking us to consider whether Hegel’s idealistic dialectic, in which all knowledge can be derived from truth, cannot be given a materialist twist. Using quantum physics and the uncertainty principle, we arrive once again at the concept of retrospective teleology in which the stringing together of contingent events which have emerged out of quantum processes and fields of uncertainty can be traced back only from from their teleological endpoint and cannot be divined in advance. Matter comes first, of course, but that matter is also subject to subjectivity and subjective perceptions of the material world and also lead us to undertake things which change that material world. This understanding of dialectical materialism means that the transcendent within the real is the thing which enables us to reach the transcendent endpoint. This, then, is the real “Real”. It is an inaccessible “Real” because it does not yet exist, just as there might not yet be a God, but at some point there may well be. “All we can do is wait for a contingent scientific breakthrough—only then will it be possible to retroactively reconstruct the logic of the process.” (Žižek)
Although Žižek is quite critical of the idea of autopoiesis and describes its use in the last few decades as “commonplace”, he nevertheless goes on to talk about a dialectical relationship between what is and what might be in highly autopoietic terms:
“The true problem is thus not how an organism adapts to its environment, but how it is that there is something, a distinct entity, which must adapt itself in the first place. And, it is here, at this crucial point, that today’s biological language starts to resemble, quite uncannily, the language of Hegel. This relationship between the empirical and the transcendental-historical gets further complicated with the fact that, over the last few decades, technological progress in experimental physics has opened up a new domain, that of “experimental metaphysics,” unthinkable in the classical scientific universe: “questions previously thought to be a matter solely for philosophical debate have been brought into the orbit of empirical inquiry.” 
This dialectical admixture between science and philosophy is something which concerns Žižek very centrally in this final chapter. As one would expect, Žižek returns the usual understanding of the relationship between science and philosophy on its head and points out that:
“Today, the scientific discovery which needs philosophical rethinking is quantum physics—how are we to interpret its ontological implications whilst avoiding the double trap of superficial pragmatic empiricism and obscurantist idealism (“mind creates reality”)? Lenin’s Materialism and Empirio-Criticism has to be thoroughly rewritten—firstly by abandoning the aforementioned naïve notion of fully constituted material reality as the sole true reality outside our minds. This notion of material reality as “all” relies on the overlooked exception of its transcendental constitution. The minimal definition of materialism hinges on the admission of a gap between what Schelling called Existence and the Ground of Existence: prior to fully existent reality, there is a chaotic non-All proto-reality, a pre-ontological virtual fluctuation of a not-yet fully constituted real. This pre-ontological real is what Badiou calls pure multiplicity, in contrast to the level of appearances, which is the level of reality constituted by the transcendental horizon of a world. This is why, in a strange reversal of the standard distribution of predicates, contemporary idealism insists on corporeality, on the unfathomable density and inertia of matter, while materialism is more and more “abstract,” reducing reality to a process rendered in mathematical formulae and formal permutations of elements.”
“(1) Within the symbolic order, possibility as such possesses an actuality of its own; that is, it produces real effects—for example the father’s authority is fundamentally virtual, a threat of violence. In a similar way, in the quantum universe, the actual trajectory of a particle can only be explained if one takes into account all of its possible trajectories within its wave function. In both cases, the actualization does not simply abolish the previous panoply of possibilities: what might have happened continues to echo in what actually happens as its virtual background.
(2) Both in the symbolic universe and in the quantum universe, we encounter what Lacan calls “knowledge in the real”: if, in the famous double-slit experiment, we observe an electron’s trajectory in order to discover through which of the two slits it will pass, the electron will behave as a particle; if we do not observe it, it will display the properties of a wave—as if the electron somehow knew whether it was being observed or not. Is such behavior not limited to the symbolic universe in which our “taking ourselves to be X” makes us act like X?
(3) When quantum physicists try to explain the collapse of the wave function, they resort again and again to the metaphor of language: this collapse occurs when a quantum event “leaves a trace” in the observation apparatus, when it is “registered” in some way. We obtain here a relationship of externality—an event becomes fully itself, it realizes itself, only when its external surroundings “take note” of it—which echoes the process of symbolic realization in which an event fully actualizes itself only through its symbolic registration, its inscription into a symbolic network, which is external to it.
(4) Furthermore, there is a temporal dimension to this externality of registration: a minimum of time always elapses between a quantum event and its registration, and this minimal delay opens up the space for a kind of ontological cheating with virtual particles (an electron can create a proton and thereby violate the principle of constant energy, on condition that it reabsorbs it quickly enough, before its environment “takes note” of the discrepancy.) This delay also opens the way for temporal retroactivity: the present registration decides what must have happened—for example, if, in the double-slit experiment, an electron is observed, it will not only (now) behave as a particle, its past will also retroactively become (“will have been”) that of a particle, in a homology with the symbolic universe in which a present radical intervention (the rise of a new Master-Signifier) can retroactively rewrite the (meaning of the) entire past. Perhaps, then, insofar as retroactivity is a crucial feature of the Hegelian dialectics, and insofar as retroactivity is only thinkable in an “open” ontology of not-fully-constituted reality, the reference to Hegel can be of some help in bringing out the ontological consequences of quantum physics.
 It is in this sense that we should read those theologians who claim that Adam and Eve did copulate while in the Garden of Eden, but did so as a simple instrumental activity, like sowing seeds in a field, without any underlying sexual tension.
 Zupančič, “Sexual Difference and Ontology.”
 To cite Borges, with the emergence of Kafka, Poe and Dostoyevsky are no longer what they were, for, from the standpoint of Kafka, we can see in them dimensions which were not previously there.
 No wonder the greatest poet of the material inertia in cinema, Andrei Tarkovsky, is simultaneously one of the great cinematic “spiritualists.” More broadly, do not the three aspects of the Lacanian Real fit the three aspects of materialism? First, the “imaginary” Real: the proverbial grain of dust, the material “indivisible remainder” which cannot be sublated in the symbolic process. Then, the “symbolic” Real: scientific letters and formulae which render the structure of material reality. Finally, the “real” Real: the cut of pure difference, of the inconsistency of structure.
 Karen Barad, Meeting the Universe Halfway: Quantum Physics and the Entanglement of Matter and Meaning, Durham: Duke University Press 2007, p. 35.