The fall of metaphysics

The fall of metaphysics

In his 1935-6 lecture ‘Basic questions of Metaphysics’, Heidegger does not seek to replace science, or indeed even to reform it. He wants science to avoid a metaphysical pitfall. He relates a story, via Plato, of a philosopher who is so fixated at looking at the heavens, that to the amusement of the watching maids , he falls down a well. It seems as if science has well and truly overcome this risk, it focuses on the ‘here-below’. Today’s scientist would have identified the well and steered clear of it. We moderns are defined by our aversion to metaphysics.

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Heidegger: Enframing determines a new type of causality

Heidegger: Enframing determines a new type of causality

Technology creates a fundamental anticipation which directs the activity of production itself, so that the actual thing produced, is merely a byproduct that is consistent with, but that which fails to fully discharge, a potential that is brought-forth in this act of creation. This truth of technology, exceeds truth as correspondence, and is expressed best in poetry.

This primordial Greek understanding of what is essential to technology, is perverted, initially by Plato whom distinguished the word play of poetry from that of science. We doubled down on this error through the use of modern technology, that penetrates nature, for ends which are not those of what is penetrated.

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Heidegger on causality: On the return of the Greek

Heidegger on causality: On the return of the Greek

Heidegger challenge to us is to think efficient causality as being derived from a more primary sense of cause considered as final cause,min which the effects of cause are considered internal to cause itself. A proper understanding of causality will go on to give us access to the truth of technology.

He does this through an almost Hegelian argument, but first let us examine his example of the silver chalice:

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Python Script Errors: object () takes no parameters

Object () takes no parameters

Often caused by missing underscores for the __init__ method. The __init__ creates an instance of a particular class.

Python makes a distinction between creating an object, and initializing an object. This corresponds to the difference that Heidegger made in Being and Time between Being and beings. The former is question of the”beingness” of being in general, whereas beings is a question of particular beings.

An object is created in Python automatically when a particular class is called. When an object is called the method __new__ is executed by Python straight away.

However we have to define the initialization of a particular object within the body of the class definition. The error: Object () takes no parameters is informing us that the Object is yet to take the form of a particular object.

A common error is that when we code __init__ within the body of the class definition we miss an underscore. Thereby Python does not recognize the __init__ method which defines a particular object, and throws up the error.