enowning
Thursday, July 19, 2018
 
At MerionWest, Matt McManus on why progressives should care.
[I]t is important to consider what can be claimed from Heidegger for the purposes of progressive thought. Most of us, he claims, are distracted from this and fall into the idea of oneness. This is especially true in large urban areas. Forces beyond our control compel us to focus on the now “yolo?” and live fragmented lives of needs and satisfaction. In these contexts, we focus on being like animals rather than selves, and become increasingly homogenous and indistinguishable. Heidegger sees this as characteristic of liberal thought where happiness rather than authenticity is taken as the primary aim; the self becomes reduced to expression through highly transient activities such as paying attention to fashion, or gender roles, or becoming wealthy. All of these distract from an awareness of our finitude and lead us to make little of the lives we are given.
 
 
In the TLS, David E. Cooper on the forgetfulness of Being.
With technology, the forgetfulness of Being is complete. For, with the world experienced as stuff for human use, all sense of its source in something mysterious and beyond human control is lost. The very idea that technology is only one way of revealing is itself suppressed. Homelessness, too, is complete in the age of technology. It is not simply that technological frenzy uproots populations from “their native soil”, but that nothing guides the whole process. The only aim is “maximum yield at minimum expense”, but no one knows what is supposed to be the yield, so that “man stumbles aimlessly about” in a world that he does not understand and cannot feel secure in.
 
 
Jason W. Alvis on the forgetfulness of oblivion.
[T]here is also a sense of oblivion inherent within Being, and that is not due to man's forgetting of the ontological difference as Seinsvergessenheit, or any abandonment of the gods. Being withholds a fundamental notion of itself within itself, never to be revealed: "Being does not come to the light of its own essence." And in bringing beings into appearance. "Being itself stays away. The truth of being escapes us. It remains forgotten." ...[T]he a priori of Being never fully comes into the light of appearance, for its truth, although recognizable as truth, keeps itself at a distance, ever retaining its element of oblivion or forgetfulness. Nevertheless, this is not a privation, as Being is what brings-to-present and therefore is the closest of things despite being forgotten. The task is not to bring Being into further manifestation per se, but rather to be appropriated by its lethe, to be instilled with the wonder of what Vergessenheit ("oblivion") has concealed or withdrawn from presence.
P. 45
 
Wednesday, July 18, 2018
 
The New Statesman reviews Laurence Scott's Picnic Comma Lightning: In Search of the New Reality.
Some of his subjects seem already analysed to exhaustion by others, even as they have not actually attained reality yet: this is true, for example, of the celebrated “Internet of Things”, which in consumer terms is still largely a marketing buzz-phrase designed to get us to buy internet-connected fridges, and in techno-political terms is really a future dystopia of total surveillance of the citizenry by turning every innocent object into a spy cam. Of the first wave of popular “smart objects”, such as Amazon or Google’s talking home speakers, it is unclear how helpful it is to conclude that “they resemble Heidegger’s definition of quiescence, containing ‘a fullness of being and reality which, in the end, essentially surpasses the reality of the real’.”
 
 
Daniela Vallega-Neu on beings before they're appropriated.
The inceptive appropriating event clears an openness, with which Heidegger rethinks what he calls in Contributions the "there" of being-there, the open site (or time-space) for the truth of beyng. It is striking that now (in the first section of On Inception) he thinks this openness right away in relation to the "becoming being" (seiend werden) of beings out of the nothingless, which is ("is" needs to be crossed out here) precisely a being before it becomes a being, before it is differentiated into becoming a being. He writes that the in-between is appropriated to the nothingless (later he speak of the "beingless") that in this appropriation becomes a being. He calls this event (here comes another basic word) Dazwischenkunft, the "coming in-between" in both a spatial and a temporal sense.
Pp. 107-8
 
Tuesday, July 17, 2018
 
Calvin L. Warren on Ontological Terror.
Ontological Terror thinks with and against Heidegger, since I believe Heidegger’s destruction of metaphysics can assist black studies in the tremendous task of thinking Being and blackness, as Grant Farred has suggested. Heidegger’s Destruktion covers a wide range of philosophical issues, and it is not my objective to address all of these complexities; my interest is the relation between Heidegger’s critique of metaphysical violence, available equipment, and the task of remembering as it concerns blackness. What I hope to broach in this book, with all the aporias such as broaching encounters, is that the Negro is the missing element in Heidegger’s thinking (as well as in that of those postmetaphysicians indebted to Heidegger, such as Jean- Luc Nancy, Giorgio Agamben, Alain Badiou, and Gianni Vattimo). If, as we learn in Being and Time, Dasein uses tools to experience its thrown- ness in the world (establishing its facticity) and to develop its unique project oriented toward the future (projectionality), the Negro — as commodity, object, slave, putative backdrop, prisoner, refugee, and corpse — is the quintessential tool Dasein uses. The use of the Negro metaphysically and ontologically, as a tool, is what black thinking is tasked with pursuing. Thus, black thinking (and postmetaphysics) must ask the unasked question “How is it going with black being?” Without broaching this question, all forms of destruction are just reconstitutions, since the world continues to use the Negro (as black and nothing) to forget Being and the sadistic pleasure of this forgetfulness.
P. 10
 
 
Jason W. Alvis on Heidegger's phenomenology of the inapparent.
In a particular, yet limited sense, phenomenology under Heidegger's watch becomes also an approach to uniquely look-past-things in their ontic presence by way of one's becoming or being Dasein, which is accomplished by being the open-being that fashions creatively a space (Raumlichkeit) of play for these appearances. The sense data or hyle (ὕλη) are paradoxically the most immantently present, yet they become inconspicuous in one's preference for what is putatively not given in any ontic way, those categorial intuitions. One effectively can be situated, however, (or bring one's thinking to this place) in a way that allows a variation of access to the seemingly invisible movement from sensual to categorial intuitions. This is called the "domain" or "the clearing of the appearing of the unapparent" in which one performs "an exercise in a phenomenology of the inapparent." ... [I]t is in the Zähringen seminar that Heidegger sums up this aspect of his career that demonstrated how the nonappearing and nonmanifesting of phenomena make it possible for one to be tuned-in to the fundamental concealments of things as they appear. He indeed showed that the thing itself does not appear on the grounds of the objectivity of consciousness but rather according to the disclosedness and hiddenness of things.
P. 45
 
Monday, July 16, 2018
 
Cinema5D on how to use a camera.
The philosopher Martin Heidegger devoted much of his mental power to an analysis of how we exist in the world surrounded by things that we only fully encounter when we take them in hand and start using them. Unique among philosophers, he understood that things don’t just sit still and submit to our detached, unbiased analysis. On the contrary, we can only fully account for our experience if we also consider things as they exist while in use as equipment. This led him to theorize two “modes of encounter” with things.
First, there is “readiness-to-hand.” Something exists as ready-to-hand when our attention is directed not at it, but rather upon some job we are doing. The equipment doesn’t occur as an object in our minds at all, but rather joins up with our body to get a job done. This is a mode of being in which the equipment quietly recedes into the background of our experience — we can almost forget that it is there — and exists alongside us as something actively in use.
n a way, this sounds like the tool in question hides from our gaze when in use. But in another way, the tool is actually revealing a part of itself that otherwise goes unseen. A tool in use simultaneously reveals and conceals itself. As Heidegger put it, only “the hammering itself uncovers the specific ‘manipulability’ of the hammer” (Being and Time, I. 3:69).
 
For when Ereignis is not sufficient.

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