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The Incurious Seeker’s Quest for Meaning

Heidegger, Mood and Christianity


Kevin Sludds

The paradox within the title of this book refers to its principal theme, that of elucidating our innate capacity to transform/convert from an inauthentic everyday mode of being to an authentic one. This study provides an analysis of affect as a means of highlighting a number of key points of contact between the disciplines of philosophy and theology when addressing this topic. The author explores Martin Heidegger’s intimate connections with Christianity, firstly, by examining the close ties he and his family had to the Catholic Church and, secondly, from within his fundamental ontology as developed in Being and Time. Finally, he demonstrates through literary and comparative analysis the affinity that exists between a philosophy of facticity and Christian theology in their descriptions of humankind without faith or Dasein’s inauthentic existence.
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Chapter 10: Dasein’s Authentic Transformation, Contrasts and Christian Parallels


← 202 | 203 → CHAPTER 10

Dasein’s Authentic Transformation, Contrasts and Christian Parallels

a) Authentic Dasein’s Transformed Temporality

If we are to truly appreciate the holistic nature of Heidegger’s analysis I need, in this penultimate chapter, to say something more about the effects of Dasein’s facing up to anxiety and death (and through guilt, the call of conscience, resoluteness and the moment of vision), and just how its temporal structure is transformed. Inauthentic temporality we are told has the form of awaiting and forgetting, “curiosity always holds by what is coming next, and has forgotten what has gone before” (BT, 1992, 398–399); a mode of being that evades its very powerlessness by continually projecting into the world of daily encounters and solicitude that are controllable. Dasein’s past becomes something (if not de rigueur) which is overlooked by fallen, curious Dasein’s constant flitting from one new thing to the next and is relegated to the oblivion of the forgotten, something which makes compliance with the ‘they’ easier.

Inauthentic temporality views time as little more than a string of ceaseless now units of ‘not yet,’ ‘present’ and ‘no longer,’ among which Dasein has been thrown. Past events are no more and irretrievable; even historical artefacts, such as the Book of Kells (AD 800) are considered just pieces of the past, though remaining present-at-hand. It is important to be aware of the fact that in English the word ‘history’ is used for both historical...

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