A Conversation with Martin Heidegger by Raymond Tallis (auth.)

By Raymond Tallis (auth.)

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For Da-sein has always already referred itself to an encounter with a ‘world’. This dependency of being referred belongs essentially to its being. (BT 81) There is an important potential misunderstanding here which needs to be pre-empted: the world of Da-sein is not the internal accusative of the subject as is the world of the solipsist or idealist. It is externality. But this, too, must not be misunderstood: the beings in Da-sein’s world – you call them ‘innerworldly things’ (or, rather, your excellent translator does) – are not the natural objects of physics, composed of neutral matter.

Neither of these problematic (indeed insolubly problematic) scenarios arises because The objective presence together of the physical and the psychical is ontically and ontologically completely different from the phenomenon of being- in-the-world. (BT 190) Neither the objective presence of things nor the subject is primordial: they are derivative. What is primordial is being-in-the-world. And it is here, not in confrontation with something like material objects, that the basis of ‘reality’ is to be found: ‘With Da-sein as beingin-the-world, beings have been already disclosed’ (BT 192) and ‘this existential and ontological statement seems to agree with the thesis of realism that the external world is objectively present in a real way’ (BT 192).

You offered an awakening into, or to, one’s life, rather than an awakening out of it; yes, an awakening to one’s life that celebrated it rather than downgraded it as a mere dream. On the edge of your thoughts was a revelation of immanence rather than of transcendence and with this came the promise of escaping (simply through being made aware of it) ‘the being of everydayness’ (BT 119), prescribed by the ‘they’ (that is, by everyone and no one), in which ‘every mystery loses its power’ (BT 119) and ‘everything primordial is flattened down as something long since known’ (BT 119).

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