Author: John D. CAPUTO, Professor, Syracuse University; Professor Emeritus, Villanova University
This is a quasi-comparative study of the thoughts of later Heidegger. By comparing the former and later Heidegger, later Heidegger and German mystical poet Angelus Silesius, the author tries to show that “Without why” (ohne warum, Gelassenheit) is exactly the essential characteristic of later Heidegger’s thoughts. Based on the author’s previous study of German mysticism, the author demonstrates the thought of “Without why” in later Heidegger through an implicit comparative study, which is the method suggested by Heidegger himself. As such, this paper is both an implicit study of the relationship between later Heidegger and mysticism, and a study of the conversion of Heidegger from his former thoughts to his later ones. As an interpretation of the later Heidegger, the author mainly focuses on the thought of “Without why” in his later period and the relationship between this thought and his former ones. As a study of the quasi-religion of Heidegger, the author tries to depict a quasi-religious schema from the later Heidegger writings. The author argues that, although Dasein is the mode of Sein which holds its authentic being in “question”, i.e. Seinsfrage, the later Heidegger replaces this mode of authentic being with the mode of “Without why”. It is in the mode of “Without why” that Dasein will achieve its authenticity. In this sense, authenticity is not shown by Dasein’s being able to raise the problem of Being, but by its “Without why”, just as the rose in Angelus Silesius’s poetry: “The rose is without why”.
Later Heidegger, Dasein, Being, Mysticism, “Without Why”, Gelassenhei
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