Re: authenticity again


Chris,

I have read some of your notes on Heidegger here and admired your
presentation of them. I'm not sure if we can relate what you are
concerned with here to what has captured my own interest at this moment.
I am dubious about any attempt to draw conclusions about authors'
personal motivations based on public writings, but I will think about
your ideas.

What seems more available is an analysis of the way his work enters
into the great philosophical conversation. What excited the German
philosophy student with his work when young Heidegger spoke with the
vocabulary he was building in B&T seems to me to be the way in which his
work blends a value system with ontology. I don't see it as a criticism
of his ontology, particularly, because I take his ontology as a
perspective. But it seems to me that Heidegger discovered a way of
saying, essentially, "take on my values and you will be able to understand
being. Live as I suggest and the truth about the being will be disclosed
to you." When Hegel took us through the dialectic of the master/slave,
we, there was not a real sense of choice about it, either. In my current
reading of Heidegger, his work serves to inspire the reader to choose to
be authentic. Choose to be authentic and the deep nature of being will
be disclosed to you.

Do you agree with this reading?

Regarding the question of Heidegger's personal motivation as he became
a Nazi: I have read some of Heidegger's speeches as a Nazi, speeches that
end with a "Heil Hitler," and they are certainly shocking. It is
certainly easy to imagine him being inspired by his reading of
Zarathustra. But this kind of thinking must have read much differently
in a world that talked politely about social evolution of the barbarian
to the "civilized" races and who learned to approach their own
reproduction through the lens of eugenics programs designed to bring
forth an increasingly perfected person. I'm not sure it wasn't such a
prevalent view at that time that Heidegger didn't fall into his Nazi hat
when he slipped into his own prattle. That's not an argument for such a
view, but a speculation of a possibility. No?

..Lois Shawver



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