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A New Beginning?

I have only had time to study the article by Ennis on the early Heidegger. It will take more time for me to integrate what I have learned. But I must express my enthusiasm for the careful and subtle distinctions the article draws between Heidegger, Kant, and Hegel with the concepts of worldhood, truth, and history.

Forgive my unscholarly naiveté, but the concepts taken from the early Heidegger help to supply my need for a non-mathematical approach to space and time. Space as world and time as history relieve me of the incessant confinement of nature understood mathematically. I have the deepest respect for math as the most powerful tool we possess. Nature understood mathematically misses the significance of worldhood. Time understood mathematically misses the significance of temporality. The consequent epistemologies in the natural sciences miss the ontological understanding of truth that Heidegger calls the truth of Being.

The differences are as subtle as Ennis so carefully and helpfully describes. I am currently tempted to think of the quality of time, understood as temporality, and the quality of space, understood as world, taken as the quality of truth understood ontologically. With all due respect for the varieties of realism currently competing for dominance, I need a way to express what they leave out. And that is truth as actualized.

The ontological distinction allows us to see Heidegger’s event as what is disclosed when anything happens within a context of the finite (so far as we can tell) whole. As pieces of such a whole, we can find no objective location. But as Ennis writes about “Dasein inhabits truth,” we can manage “a phenomenological seeing that recognizes that truth is generated in and emerges alongside events.”

Such an analysis makes my years of reading and studying Heidegger worth it. My thanks to the author and the publishers of the journal.


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