File spoon-archives/heidegger.archive/heidegger_2001/heidegger.0102, message 30

Date: Wed, 21 Feb 2001 17:20:58 -0600
Subject: philosophy AS/IS religion

Once again, my prejudice has been confirmed.  I think that's a good 
thing when one  is right.

In the Introduction to his study of Plotinus, Inge explains why he 
will be adopting what might seem to some to be a teacherly didactic 

I have steeped myself in his writings. . . [trying] . . . not only to 
understand them, as one might try to understand any other 
intellectual system, but to take them, as he (Plotinus) assuredly 
wished his readers to take them, as a guide to right living and right 
thinking.  There is no Greek philosopher who does not intend to be an 
ethical teacher. . . He must be studied as a spiritual director, a 
prophet and not only a thinker.

I heard echoes here of Heidegger's introduction to his 1924 course on 

Eine solche Absicht steht naturgemäss unter einer
Anzahl von Voraussetzungen: 1) erste Voraussetzung,
da gerade Arist.  etwas zu sagen hat, das also gerade Arist. Gewählt 
wird und nicht Platon, Kant oder Hegel; dass ihm also eine 
ausgezeichnete Stellung
nicht nur innerhalb der griechischen, sondern der gesamten 
abendlaendischen Philosophie zukommt.  2) dass wir alle noch nicht so 
fortgeschritten sind,
dass wir uns nichts mehr haeten sagen zu lassen, dass es mit uns in 
irgendeiner Hinsicht nicht stimmt. . .  5) das menschliche Leben hat 
in sich die Möglichkeit, sich einzig auf sich selbst Zu stellen, 
auszukommen ohne Glauben, ohne Religion unddergl.  6) einmethodische 
Voraussetzung: den Glauben an die Geschichte in dem Sinne, dass wir 
voraussetzen, dass Geschichte und geschichtliche Vergangenheit 
(sofern ihr nur die Bahn Freigemacht wird), die Möglichkeit hat, 
einer Gegenwart oder besser Zukunft einen Stoss zu versetzen.
  Die 6 Voraussetzungen sind eine starke Zumutung--wir betreiben ja 
aber nur philologie.  Philosophie ist heute besser gestellt, sofern 
sie aus der
Grundvoraussetzung lebt, dass alles in bester Ordnung sei.  Zur 
abgrenzung der Artund Weise, wie wir hier ueber Philosophie hadeln, 
möchte ich Arist.
selbst zum Zeugen rufen.

  Such an intention naturally can
only exist under a number of prerequisites/assumptions:  . .
1.  First assumption.  That specifically Aristotle has something to 
say, that he is the one who was chosen and not Plato, Kant or Hegel, 
that he therefore is
deserving of an honored position not only in the Greed philosophy, 
but rather in the entire Western philosophy.

2.  That we are not so advanced that there would be nothing more that 
we need to be told, that in some regard, something is still wrong 
with us. . .

5.  Human life has in itself the possibility to depend only upon 
itself, to manage without faith, religion and the like.

6.  A methodologiical assumption:  Faith in history in the sense that 
we assume that history and historical past (insofar as the way is 
made clear) have the
possibility of dealing a blow, setting a present or better future in motion.

The six prerequisites are an unreasonable demand-but we are only 
carrying out philology after all.  Philosophy has a better position 
today, insofar as it
grows out of a basic assumption that everything is alright, in order. 
I would like to call Aristotle as a witness for the delimitation of 
the way that we will
deal with philosophy here.

As he does elsewhere, Heidegger strongly directs his students to 
attend to Aristotle as an ethical teacher and spiritual director, 
requiring that they set all "religious" perspectives aside in order 
that philosophy ( whose proper focus is the investigation of  "the 
possibility of life in itself) be able to show itself as what it is. 
Towards the same end,   he also requires that his students place 
themselves "at the disposal" of the text by recognizing that they are 
"needing to be told. . .that in some regard, something is still wrong 
with us"  that philosophy, properly understood, in in a unique 
position to correct.

So listen up Catnip!

Professor Allen Scult					Dept. of Philosophy
HOMEPAGE: " Heidegger on Rhetoric and Hermeneutics":		Drake 
University		Des 
Moines, Iowa 50311
PHONE: 515 271 2869
FAX: 515 271 3826

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