From: TMB <tblan@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sun, 12 Oct 1997 12:18:56 -0400 (EDT)
On Sun, 12 Oct 1997, Mike Staples wrote:
> TMB wrote:
> > but I don't buy that that is people's
> > ordinary way of being in the world. People do love, you know. It's not
> > as
> > if they're all wandering around like robots until being saved by
> > Heidegger
> > or whomever purports to enable the disclosure of authentic being in
> > the
> > world. Why are we constantly be barraged with this? Is that how it is
> > for
> > you?
> Well I think you might be headed in the wrong direction here.
> I think I hear a tone of value/judgement in your description of
> "authentic" and "inauthentic".
Absolutley not. Or else, the value situation in this regard is on a deeply
ontological level and has certain ways involved in it intrinsic to any
valuing that Heidegger, for example, might have in pursuing the question
of Being in the first place. No, I am definitely saying that what is
involved here can be an *error*: that what is taken as "inauthentic" in
the *first place* may in fact be not so inauthentic.
I have had this discussion before on this
> list. In fact, I had argued that authentic and inauthentic DO have value
> judgements associated with them... and that heidegger knew it, and
> choose them partially because of this tone. Most of the list rose up
> against me. And I will admit that my position there was (and is) very
Again, it would be a valuing that occurs on a profoundly different level
from "oridnary" value judgments. But the "shepherd of being" is
intrinsically bound up in a situation of care, and hence, "value", though
"value" is a loaded and problematic word.
Most would say, I think, that there is no value judgement to be
> attached to these terms. They are merely descriptive of the way we go
> about being in the world. And our initial way of being in the world is
> to be in it in a way that is socially determined -- i.e., determined by
> someone other than me (this isn't quite right, but is consistent with
> the notion of thrown-ness).
I would tend to agree, provisionally. I meant my question, which perhaps
seemed a bit "hot", never the less on the level of *description*
> Ontic/ontological distinctions get a bit fuzzy for me at this point. As
> I understand it, darn near everything we do is colored by our being
> thrown into a world that is already constructed. It is constructed in no
> small way by society, culture... the "They".
In my view, you can't say "constructed" like this. The world *itself* is
trown. But much more than that, one is in fact *not thrown*. One is
*grown*. Sorry for te rhyme, but I have to strongly disagree here. True,
one is thrown *at times*, but generally it is not so simple.
This thrown-ness is
> inauthentic because it is imposed upon us as something we are simply
> thrown into.
Again, a serious error.
It also hides our relationship to Being. The ontic
> qualities of being in the world you allude to -- like "love" and
> "friendship" and "hate" or "anger" all have both inauthentic and
> authentic possibilities. But because each of these is shaped so strongly
> by the thrown possibilities of our world, we are generally confronted
> with the inauthentic as the "normal" way of experiencing them.
No. Because you have dominated these conditiosn (and I don't mean this
polemically but descriptively!) by the concept of "throwing", you have
closed off their true conditions as they can show themselves. This doesn't
mean that there isn't both authenticity and inauthenticity involved in
these things. But *who, we*? Who are you talking about? "People in
general"? What of a child hiding in a closet fearing being raped and
beaten by his father? An exception, and does he hide "inauthentically"?
And what simply of a child running to greet his mother afte preschool?
What of a kid discovering masturbation? What of a high-school student
getting read for her SAT exams? What of a teenager being rejected by is
social crowd because he is homosexual? What of someone having a wonderful
time acting in the shool play? A high-school football star? These
conditions are permeated with authenticity and inauthenticity through and
through. They can not be cast simply as primarily inauthentic.
> Now, is that the way I experience myself? In fact, it is. I observe
> myself as always being led by the nose, one way or another, by a
> social/cultural/media master. I observe the role that has been defined
> for me, (by me as well, as the inauthentic is really only the part of ME
> that is not authentic) as the prod that drives me.
Well, that's *you*. It's not me. On the other hand, *is it really you*?
The condition you describe does obtain, for me, too. But *primarily*? I'm
not so sure.
>From the standpoint
> of psychotherapy, I experience my clients as fighting the pressures of
> their inauthentic, technologically driven, enframed world, and the need
> to experience their own authenticity. Heidegger wrote (somewhere) that
> dasein cannot have a meaningful existence by living a life defined by
> the They. So there is that word "meaningful" again. I wrote just
> recently of depression as what is left when one's soul is starved by the
> soul-less-ness of the inauthentic.
I agree strongly that the problem you are pointing to is there. Never the
less, part of the path to amelioration in, especially, therapeutics, is
not *simply* to suggest that one is "lost in the they", but in fact is
*already* also authentic. There is a subtle, but profound difference. It
may well be one of the biggest problems created by "the they" (etc.) that
it leads to the very idea that tere is a dominion of the they in the first
place. In tis sense, Dasein does indeed need to call itself out of the
they, though this takes on quite a different tenor when seen in this
> Michael S.
> --- from list heidegger@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx ---
"I would rather have India resort to arms in order to defend her hounour,
than that she should, in a cowardly manner, become or remain a helpless
witness to her own dishonour." M. K. Gandhi
--- from list heidegger@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx ---