Saturday, 1 October 2016

Irresponsible Heideggerean Musings

I've started an MA in philosophy.

One of my great and primary philosophical influences is Martin Heidegger. It's been a real pleasure to have some time and space to actually sit and read him, and read around him, again. I may do my dissertation on him.

These are some thoughts I jotted down recently. Likely unoriginal, but I'll share them all the same. There may be more to follow. 

God, Materialism and Being

Why isn't God the answer to the Question of Being? Because if God exists, then He is a being among beings. Even if He's the origin of all beings, and the foremost being in existence: how can a being be regarded as the font and ground of Being as such? God Himself is not to be regarded as the root of Being. 

The Nothingness of Being hangs over God as it hangs over everything.

This means nothing for the question of His existence per se, it is merely a comment on what His existence would precisely not mean.

But God is dead these days, as far as most people are concerned, though the God of the West (for the last thousand-plus years) has a habit of cheating death, so maybe we should watch this space. 

Anyway, with God in eclipse there is instead the material. So let's talk about that.

Material is not the answer to the Question. How could it be? Even if base material, or first substance, were the root of all beings, that says as little for the Question of Being as God's role as maker of all things did. If base material exists, it is an entity among entities. It is not the ground of Being.

Materialism, then, is as forgetful of ontology as traditional religion.

I don't see how any account of 'transcendental materialism' could escape this either.