The Tractatus Comico-Philosophicus: Martin Heidegger

Tractatus-2020-HeideggerMartin Heidegger Cares (Except When He Doesn’t)

  1. We didn’t ask for this crap. We fell into it, like some amnesiac thrown onto a stage, without a script, in the middle of a play already underway. (So, your first reaction is, “Oh, gee, hi,” when it ought to be, “What are my ontological commitments here?” You would be asking the right question if philosophers had not forgotten the question of Being.)
  2. And to make things worse, the other actors don’t even realize that there is little in the way of script, that they, collectively–Das Man–are to a large extent just making stuff up or mindlessly engaging what happen to be the affordances provided by the properties and set pieces and other people that happen to be on stage in their historical time and place.*
  3. You could just play along, but that would be a big, fat lie. It wouldn’t be authentic. (So, your next reaction should be, “WTF?”)
  4. You know this in your heart of hearts because you are Dasein, the kind of being for whom its own being is in question.
  5. And the answer to the really big question about your being, you realize, is that soon you won’t be. You will die.
  6. So, you have anxiety, care about the future, which you express in projects. In fact, you ARE your caring, your projects; those cares push out the one REALLY BIG CARE.
  7. My projects were being a collaborator with fascists and writing a big book that I didn’t finish but published anyway and then a lot of dwelling in the woods where I encountered gods in the clearings. I’m the only guy who ever understood Hegel, and no one ever understood me, even though I was the greatest philosopher since Aristotle.

*They don’t make up the props and set pieces. Those have their own being, which discloses itself, sometimes as being alongside and sometimes as being ready to hand. Like all beings, they are the infinite sum of their potential appearances. I learned that from my teacher, Husserl, whom I repaid by barring him from the university where he taught me this and much, much else. What can I say? I was half genius and half provincial, Black Forest peasant, Rasse und Seele, and I was overcome by visions of a Volkish paradise to come.

Ed note: I often refer to Martin Heidegger when explaining the genetic fallacy. He is proof positive that one cannot discount a truth because it originated in the mind of a horrible human being. Heidegger was a horrible human being. And he was a horrible writer. But he was also one of the greatest thinkers who ever lived. The effort that it takes to learn his language is repaid and repaid and repaid.

Who said philosophy was difficult?

The tractatus comico-philosophicus. Dedicated to bring the wisdom of the ages to all, for why shouldn’t you be as confused as they were?

Copyright 2014 by Robert D. Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Advertisements

About Bob Shepherd

interests: curriculum design, educational technology, learning, linguistics, hermeneutics, rhetoric, philosophy (Continental philosophy, Existentialism, metaphysics, philosophy of language, philosophy of mind, epistemology, ethics), classical and jazz guitar, poetry, the short story, archaeology and cultural anthropology, history of religion, prehistory, veganism, sustainability, Anglo-Saxon literature and language, systems for emergent quality control, heuristics for innovation
This entry was posted in Existentialism, Philosophy. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s