Heidegger's phenomenology of deathPresentation Transcript
ONE YEAR TO LIVE If I had but one year to live; One year to help; one year to give; One year to love; one year to bless; One year of better things to stress; One year to sing; one year to smile; To brighten earth a little while;
I think that I would spend each day,
In just the very self-same way that I do now.
For from afar, the call may come to cross the bar ends at any time
And I must be prepared to meet eternity.
So if I have a year to live, Or just a day in which to give A pleasant smile, a helping hand,
A mind that tries to understand
A fellow-creature when in need,
‘ Tis one with me, -- I take no heed;
But try to live each day He sends
To serve my gracious Master’s ends.
How do we face death?
How do we deal with life in the face of death?
The following is from a comment in a New Zealand newspaper by the director of radiography – in charge of making X-rays that show whether someone has a cancer or not.
“ Cancer makes people start thinking about the quality of their lives.
Everything they do now has a keener edge on it, and they get more out of life.
In fact, some people never become completely human beings and really start living until they get cancer.”
How would you like to die?
In olden times the court jester was an important member of the king’s household. By means of quips and witty remarks, he kept the king in good humor and entertained the household.
His king was a sour-tempered man who possessed the ancient right over life and death. According, to law, it was also legally impossible to change any sentence he had set on a subject.
Well, one day the King was upset by the court jester and in a sudden fit of rage, he sentenced the jester to death. Then, realizing too late what he had done, he said to the court jester, “In consideration of your loyal services to me, I will permit you to select the manner in which you prefer to die.”
The court jester immediately answered, “I select to die of old age.”
How would you like to be remembered?
One morning in 1888, Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite, who had amassed a fortune manufacturing and selling weapons of destruction, awoke to read his own obituary in the newspaper!
Actually, it was his brother who had died, but a reporter mistakenly wrote Alfred’s obituary.
For the first time Alfred Nobel saw himself as the world saw him: “The Dynamite King!” and nothing more.
Nothing was mentioned about his efforts at breaking down barriers between people and ideas. He was simply a merchant of death, and he would be remembered for that alone.
Alfred Nobel was horrified. He determined that the world would know the true purpose of his life.
So, he wrote his last will and testament and left his fortune to establish that most valued of all prizes: the Nobel Peace Prize.
Now, the world has forgotten his dynamite legacy.
MARTIN HEIDEGGER’S PHENOMENOLOGY OF DEATH
Death is INESCAPABLE
People normally and generally FEAR DEATH
We have cultivated the habit of thinking that death concerns (only) Others
DEATH usually connotes
a leaving behind of the beloved
a leaving behind of one’s body
These are the reasons why it would always be PAINFUL
D A S E I N
By being in the world
by being involved in it
is a bundle of possibilities has the power to be
“ Being-in-the-world” Manifests the reality that human beings have the possibility of death
One cannot fully live unless one confronts one's own mortality
A human being cannot achieve a complete or meaningful life, or any kind of "authentic existence," unless he or she comes to terms with temporality
a uniquely human awareness that a human being is a finite, historical, and temporal being
The awareness of death is a central beginning for understanding this temporality
"As soon as man comes to life, he is at once old enough to die"
the awareness and acceptance of death is a requirement for authentic existence
not a shared experience at all
one's "ownmost" and a "non-relational" experience
something one can only do by oneself, as each person dies his or her own death.
D E A T H
INAUTHENTIC HUMAN PERSON
hides death by saying, “People die but right now it has nothing to do with us.”
believes that death is “not-yet-present-at-hand,” therefore, is no threat
INAUTHENTIC HUMAN PERSON
loses himself in the ‘they’ because the ‘they’ tranquilizes death by calming the anxiety of man
The ‘they’ doesn’t want us to be anxious about death, instead the anxiety in the face of death is taken as a sign of weakness
What is the Authentic response of an individual in his/her awareness of Being-towards-Death?
he discovers himself “there” absorbed in things and people
constantly realizing his/her own possibilities for being
This is what Heidegger calls, Care = fundamental structure of Dasein
Reveals to man that death means the measureless impossibility of existence
Man’s anticipation of death does not evade death; rather accepts this possibility.