Wednesday, May 21, 2014

reverence for the future

In Heidegger’s 1975 television interview, he referred the viewer to a specific work, 1964, which is available in the book On Time and Being (1972). He died in May, 1976. Born on a 26th, he died on a 26th, a few months after Hannah Arendt, December, '75.

What is his sudden look in the last fraction of the last second of the video—a little, very private recoil: embarrassment toward a fatefulness of the word? von Kleist's reverence has been made into an interview object, there and gone, like so much of our talktalktalk?

Anyway, notice that Heidegger is pulling out a black notebook, from which he reads. There are hundreds of black notebook pages (1200+, I've heard) at the end of his Collected Works, now being published. (The notebooks were least important in his Collected Works, therefore bound last. But they are there.) He knows exactly where to go in the black notebook at that moment, for the quote he wants to share for posterity (in this piece of rare interviewing in a singular documentary that he agreed to do). The ready-to-hand presentness of that notebook is surely because he intended in advance to emphasize that passage. He knows his hundreds of pages intimately. Reading that passage was like appearing nude for an examination.

That passage is what all of the notebooks are essentially about because his works are essentially about being a precursor for future thinking: That thought. The gang media will pull something else out, and will make something else the thought that matters to them. But the thought prevailing for Heidegger from the notebooks is the one he chooses to share, about being a reverent precursor possessed by reverent precursors.

Anyway, here's the lecture: “The End of Philosophy and the Task of Thinking.”

The rigorous simple-mindedness of Heidegger's presentations in later life is due, I think, to wanting to influence young audiences. I loved his work when I was young. When I read him now, I can feel again my fresh introduction to beginning to learn how to think better with things (texts, ideas, loves, etc.).

But we're not in the mid-'60s. One should think with a philosopher in understanding his time through him (or her!).

Yet, presencing presence—presence of presencing—already always appeals to one's loving of life.

For what, to where is your love drawn? Think of it, how it is, how it may be.