Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Critchley, Simon. "Heidegger's BEING AND TIME, Part 8: Temporality." GUARDIAN July 27, 2009.

Although there is no much more we could say about division two of Being and Time, there is one final topic that I'd briefly like to explore and which some readers think is the climax of the book: temporality. Let me begin by describing what Heidegger is trying to avoid in his discussion of time. Firstly, he is trying to criticise the idea of time as a uniform, linear and infinite series of "now-points". On this model, which derives ultimately from Aristotle's Physics, the future is the not-yet-now, the past is the no-longer-now, and the present is the now that flows from future to past at each passing moment. This is what Heidegger calls the "vulgar" or ordinary conception of time where priority is always given to the present. Heidegger thinks that this Aristotelian conception of time has dominated philosophical inquiries into time from the ancient Greeks to Hegel and even up to his near contemporary Bergson. Secondly, he is trying to avoid any conception of time that begins with a distinction between time and eternity. On this understanding of time, classically expressed in Augustine's Confessions, temporality is derived from a higher non-temporal state of eternity, which is co-extensive with the infinite and eternal now of God. In order to understand what Heidegger means by temporality, we have to set it in the context of the existential analytic of Dasein that I have sought to describe. . . . Read the rest here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/belief/2009/jul/27/heidegger-being-time-philosophy.

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