Saturday, July 18, 2015

artefactphil on the Geistesgestell trap.
[P]hysics cannot entertain openly the question of time (but only on its own dictated terms of mathematizability), and philosophical scholarly discourse must avoid the simplest, most elementary questions that open the abyss underneath all kinds of metaphysical thinking. 'Professional philosophy' (a contradictio in adjecto) skilfully circumvents it. Instead, one discourses argumentatively -- never conceptually -- around certain illustrious names such as Kant or Kierkegaard or Heidegger or whatever major or minor name is currently being taken seriously in the academy for a time, around the issues themselves. Philosophy scholars talk endlessly about philosophy without ever doing philosophy, which is rigorous and risky. This corresponds to the apparently innocuous technical distinction between primary and secondary literature, which does not capture what it means to risk being a primary source in this current age.
It seems to me, that in the case of Heidegger, whose texts are still being published, we will have a period while scholars are busy translating, comparing notes, and re-translating, to get to a consistent explanation of what Heidegger meant. After that, the task for differently talented scholars will be to create a proper field of ontology, beyond the Heideggerean Geistesgestell, which can be taught and found useful in general, like say logic.
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