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Heidegger Die Frage Nach Dem Sinn Des Seins

Heidegger Die Frage Nach Dem Sinn Des Seins

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Published by Glenn Rey Anino

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Published by: Glenn Rey Anino on Mar 24, 2011
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HEIDEGGER ON THE QUESTION ABOUT THE MEANING OF BEING_____________ A Term Paper Presented to the Facultyof the Department of PhilosophyCollege of Arts and SciencesUniversity of San CarlosCebu City, Philippines_____________ In Partial Fulfillmentof the Requirements for the CourseMetaphysics_____________ byGLENN REY DISMAS ANINOMarch 2011
 
HEIDEGGER ON THE QUESTION ABOUT THE MEANING OF BEING
The question of Being is at the center of Heidegger’s thought. His philosophicalproject starts from the situation where he finds himself in an experience of a certain kindof confusion and perplexity concerning the matter on what does being actually mean. In
Being and Time,
Heidegger begins by remembering Plato's puzzling character of 
to on
-being or what is: “‘For manifestly you have long been aware of what you mean when youuse the expression “being”. We, however, who used to think we understood it, have nowbecome perplexed.”
1
This perplexity refers to the dissatisfaction of the traditional view of ontology which causes our inability to understand Being. Thus, Heidegger observes thatat present we no longer really know what the expression being mean. How did thisperplexity come about? First, Heidegger goes back to Plato’s ancient question about themeaning of the expression ‘beingand relates it to our present understanding. Theconclusion is that in the early period philosophers are occupied in the investigation of themeaning of Being and after a long time that impulse of wonder and awe has beenforgotten. We have forgotten Being because we no longer bother to have a sense of wonder and ask the question about Being. “What is Being?... This question has todaybeen forgotten.”
2
There is an experience of forgetfulness of Being [Vergessenheit].Heidegger’s observation about our forgetfulness has not simply come out from jumpinginto conclusion but rather this particular philosopher knows the history of philosophyitself. The age of forgetfulness can be traced back to its origin in history.
1
Martin Heidegger,
Being and Time,
trans.
 
John Macquarrie and Edward Robinson.
 
Henceforthreferred to as BT. (New York: Harper & Row, 1962), quoted as epigraph
in
Preface; 19.
2
BT§1, 2; 21.
 
The question what is Being has already been raised and preoccupied the ancientGreek philosophers among the so called Presocratics in the like of Parmenides andHeraclitus. Starting from them, there was already the initial impulse of the understandingof Being. However, that initial impulse which is also the genuine questioning aboutBeing has been lost or forgotten. How did this forgetfulness of Being happen? Accordingto Heidegger, the forgetfulness of Being started when the Greek philosophers who hadbeen glorified by the West for over two thousand years approached Being only in theacademic discipline and was heard only in the academic world. These philosophers inparticular are Plato and Aristotle. Heidegger says, “What these two men achieved was topersist through many alterations and ‘retouching’ down to the ‘logic’ of Hegel.”
3
Thewords alterations and retouching refer to the series of thinking and rethinking about themeaning of Being where it only becomes a subject matter, a theme, and only a matter of speculation among intellectual men. Each philosopher who is interested in metaphysicsontology makes his own ontological construction. In the parlance of Friedrich Nietzsche,western rationalization only emphasizes the Apollonian side of culture while it disregardsthe Dionysian. Apollonian is the principle of reason, order, and to an extent it is the
principium individuationis
(‘principle of individuation’) because reason is structured tohave a distinction. Thus, Apollonian is concerned on science while Dionysian is on art.Nietzsche’s criticism offers a new image of what it is to be a philosopher, that is, not theApollonian academician but Dionysian. So Nietzsche criticizes Plato for the latter’scondemnation on the role of the poet. Just like Nietzsche, Heidegger also reacts to thehistory of the West as the history of rationalization and abstraction and so his later 
3
 
Ibid.

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