The Fundamental Nature Of Human Existence Essay example

805 Words Apr 12th, 2016 4 Pages
According to Heidegger, dread is state of mind that reveals most clearly the fundamental nature of human existence.

Heidegger begins exploring the features of the human condition by questioning what “nothing” is. However, the answer to this question is difficult to define as the question deprives itself of its own subject. Heidegger states, “for thinking, which is essentially always thinking about something, would, in thinking of nothing, be forced to act against its own nature” as by asking what is “nothing”, nothing is turned into something. Heidegger continues by trying to define nothing by negating that it is something. He states “for nothing is the negation of the totality of what-is; that which is absolutely not” which leads him to the question defining “what-is”. Heidegger proceeds to explore feelings such as boredom and love which may reveal what “what-is” or “what-is-in-totality” (the whole) is but fails to obscure what “nothing" is. This then leads him to the feeling of dread.
Heidegger distinguishes dread by relating it to the experience of fear. When thinking of fear, the fear is always directed towards something, ie, the fear of something. For example, a person could fear a burglar, poverty, death or an entity or event that poses a danger to him or her. A person who is fearful is always worried of the thing they are fearful of however, dread is the fear of nothing specific. More specifically, dread is an experience of fear in which what is feared cannot be…

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