Authentic Grasp of Being Essay

1699 Words 7 Pages
Authentic Grasp of Being

Martin Heidegger provides an interesting lesson about what must be done to authentically grasp the nature of being in Being and Time. The focus of being in his book is the unique individual human consciousness referred to as Dasein, and authenticity is regarded as that which accords with Dasein’s own self, including its history, present concerns, and future possibilities. The thesis of this paper is an interpretative one: the path to authentically grasping one’s own being requires first disregarding philosophical history regarding being and then understanding one’s own presuppositions. More fully, the phenomena that give rise to examining ontology must be analyzed, which means that one must not simply start with
…show more content…
The major problem presented by this philosophical tradition is that it is presented dogmatically and so we are eager to accept its offerings without questioning their starting points. On page 43 in our translation Heidegger writes, “Dasein has had its historicality so thoroughly uprooted by tradition that it confines its interests to the multiformity of possible types, directions, and standpoints of philosophical activity in the most exotic and alien of cultures; and by this very interest it seeks to veil the fact that it has no ground of its own to stand on.” The main point of this statement is that we are distracted by the seemingly rich inquiries into being that have already been carried out, and we assume that all the different possibilities for grounding these inquires have been carefully considered and exhausted. This rich quotation also tells us that we each have an existential history that we can personally examine to begin understanding the nature of being, and it further implies that our inquiry is going to be grounded in the phenomenon of personal experience. The philosophical tradition about being dazzles us with assertions and arguments to the extent that we no longer consider personal experience as a starting point.

Earlier in his introduction (section one), Heidegger tells us of three major themes developed by the philosophical tradition discussed in section six. In the first major theme, the concept of being has been oversimplified as an easy
Open Document