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Month: April 2011

The Meaning Of Being Part 4

The Meaning Of Being Part 4

Most of the time, philosophical assertions, especially regarding metaphysics, possess the air of certainty. We think we have it all figured out. This is also a problem with religious zealots. If any of us think we have arrived at absolute truth, we are severely deluding ourselves. Dogma does not equate truth. Heidegger announces early on what has transpired throughout the history of philosophy, since Plato, regarding the question of the meaning of being. A dogmatic attitude had developed that, basically,…

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The Origin of Guilt

The Origin of Guilt

I’m interested in the question of the origin of guilt. Please join in and let me know your ideas. Guilt is an experience one has when one feels a moral standard has been violated. From Dictionary.com: 1) the fact or state of having committed an offense, crime, violation, or wrong, especially against moral or penal law; culpability 2) a feeling of responsibility or remorse for some offense, crime, wrong, etc., whether real or imagined. 3) conduct involving the commission of such crimes,…

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Kant’s Ideality And Reality Of Space And Time

Kant’s Ideality And Reality Of Space And Time

The concepts of time and space have engaged the minds of some of history’s greatest thinkers. How are we to understand time and space? Are they to be included among things which we designate as being “real?” Do space and time exist in an absolute sense, as Newton proposed? Or are they relations of things, as Leibniz argued? Immanuel Kant, in his classic work, The Critique of Pure Reason, posits both the reality and ideality of space and time (Kant…

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The Meaning Of Being Part 3

The Meaning Of Being Part 3

Now, back to Heidegger. The question of Being is the most basic question of all philosophical inquiry. It is what Heidegger calls, “philosophically primary” (B&T, pg 10). All investigations by all sciences have their foundation in the question of the meaning of Being. Before a scientist can study something, there are certain a priori assumptions that must be made. Now, scientists need not concern themselves with these questions prior to their studies, but a philosopher must. For a philosopher, the…

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The One Percent

The One Percent

I would like to take a moment out from things philosophical to talk a little about a documentary I just finished watching called The One Percent, made in 2006. The film’s creator is Jamie Johnson, who is one of the great-grandsons of Robert Wood Johnson, a co-founder of Johnson & Johnson. Johnson’s film is very revealing of the growing disparity between rich and poor in this country. The story is an overwhelming one that leaves the less well-to-do feeling hopeless….

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The Meaning Of Being Part 2

The Meaning Of Being Part 2

The meaning of being must…already be available to us in a certain way. We intimated that we are always already involved in an understanding of being. From this grows the explicit question of the meaning of being and the tendency toward its concept.  We do not know what “being” means. But already when we ask, “What is being?” we stand in an understanding of the “is” without being able to determine conceptually what the “is” means. We do not even…

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Slow Reading

Slow Reading

Leser mit Lupe, c. 1895 The following is a wonderful article by Lance Fletcher on slow reading. This article inspired me some time ago to read more slowly, especially writers like Heidegger and Nietzsche. Thank you, Lance, for sharing this with me. SLOW READING: the affirmation of authorial intent[1]   by Lancelot R. Fletcher   The phase, “slow reading,” is taken from Nietzsche. In paragraph 5 of the preface to Daybreak (Morgenröthe) he writes:   A book like this, a…

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Heidegger and the Book of Tea

Heidegger and the Book of Tea

While doing some research on Heidegger’s idea of Dasein this evening, I came across an interesting bit of knowledge I was previously unaware of. Apparently, a Japanese philosopher named Tomonubu Imamichi claims that Heidegger was inspired by his countryman, Okakura Kakuzō’s notion of   das In-der-Welt-sein (to be in the being of the world) expressed in The Book of Tea in an attempt to describe Zhuangzi‘s philosophy for Westerners. Imamichi’s teacher had offered the German translation of The Book of…

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The Meaning Of Being Part 1

The Meaning Of Being Part 1

Recently, I’ve started reading Heidegger’s Being & Time again. It’s been a few years since I delved into his thinking. I became interested again while studying archetypal psychology, ala James Hillman, Roberts Avens, and Henry Corbin. I must credit Avens’ book, The New Gnosis, as being the catalyst for this renewed interest. Some of what I will write here will be personal notes of my studies. Heidegger begins the book with a quote from Plato’s Sophist 244a: For manifestly you…

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