Heidegger 's View Of Authenticity Essay

Heidegger 's View Of Authenticity Essay

Length: 2175 words (6.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Heidegger’s Notion of Authenticity
Martin Heidegger is one of the most influential and highly regarded existential philosophers of the 20th century. Born in Meβkirch, Germany on September 26th 1889, Heidegger began his plight with life and theories of existentialism. Early in his life, Heidegger was influenced by Kierkegaard, and Edmund Husserl, which taught him the ideas of hermeneutics and phenomenology. Together, their ideas helped create one of Heidegger’s main ideas, his emphasis on being an authentic human being or “Dasein,” which translates “there Being.” The authenticity or Eigentlichkeit (own-ness) Heidegger preached was that a human being should strive to be an individual, to bring meaning to our lives. And if one does not seek to be an individual, Heidegger warns that they are doomed to dissolve into society and have no real life, a life controlled not by the ideas of the being, but of the society they belong to. Ultimately resulting in a life wasted because the being never formulated their own meaning to life.
Heidegger’s notion of authenticity can be found in other philosopher’s ideals like Fredrick Nietzsche’s Ubermensche, as well as in cinema illustrated in the movie the Seventh Seal, and literature such as the story “the Death of Ivan Ilyich.” These works together help exemplify the need to find authenticity as a means of living a true worthwhile existence, and also bring to light the result of what can happen if one does not seek authenticity. In the words of Fredrick Nietzsche “This is my way; where is yours? – Thus I answered those who asked me ‘the way.’ For the way – that does not exist.” A true authentic life does not come from a guide or teacher, but from what one creates themselves, in whi...


... middle of paper ...


...ive. Heidegger’s notion of authenticity is apparent throughout the entire story on the grounds that Ivan never sought to be authentic, or different.
Heidegger’s notion of authenticity finds itself in multiple outlets, whether it be in other philosopher’s work like Frederick Nietzsche, cinema work such as the story of Antonius Bloc in The Seventh Seal, or Literary works like the story of The Death of Ivan Ilyich. But they serve as more than just a way to possibly receive a meaningful and authentic life. They also serve as a warning to what happens if one does not truly seek for a meaning and authenticity in one’s own life. Kierkegaard is quoted as stating “The most common form of despair is not being who you are.” And if one does not seek to be an individual, they are doomed to mental despair when they are made to confront death for the first and final time.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Sartre 's View Of Consciousness Essay

- Both of these existentialists differ also when it comes to their approach to living the authentic life. Sartre has a direct approach in which he asks the individual to acknowledge death as simply another stage of life, in which one should be responsible of his own choices and not think of life as seen by others. Heidegger in the other hand, seeks to contemplate death, even if it brings anxiety, thus having to transcend the facticity that may stop us from being authentic. In other words, Sartre sees humans as the creatures that define existence, while Heidegger sees humans as merely followers of the idea of being, “Man is not the lord of beings....   [tags: Existentialism, Jean-Paul Sartre, Martin Heidegger]

Better Essays
800 words (2.3 pages)

Essay about Sartre 's View Of Death

- The subject death brings about a pessimistic view of life. It would not be surprising that if someone extensively contemplates about death, he might feel that there is not much meaning in living in a sense that what we do during our lifetime will not matter that much since we are all destined to die anyway. However Heidegger argues otherwise. He feels that by contemplating on death, we will be able to truly live our lives authentically. In this paper, I shall expound what he means by this and compare it with Sartre’s version of how to live an authentic life....   [tags: Existentialism, Jean-Paul Sartre, Anxiety, Life]

Better Essays
728 words (2.1 pages)

A Thematic Unity for Heidegger's Was Heisst Denken? Essay examples

- A Thematic Unity for Heidegger's Was Heisst Denken. ABSTRACT: This essay is primarily an analysis of Heidegger's Was Heisst Denken. I aim to provide a thematic unity for this enigmatic text, thereby rendering Heidegger's thoughts on thinking more available to those investigating the nature of human rationality and thinking. The procedure is to gather together some of the sundry themes and puzzling features resolved by unpacking this sentence: 'Most thought-provoking in our thought-provoking time is that we are still not thinking.' The chief results of this study include the establishment of a global logic to the text, the identification of 'being-thoughtful' as the proper phenomenon to be st...   [tags: Heidegger Was Heisst Denken Essays]

Free Essays
3469 words (9.9 pages)

Essay Dr. Heidegger´s Experiment by Nathaniel Hawthorne

- Since the beginning of time, man has tried in vain to find a cure to the inevitable. There is no secret cure for aging. Whether through the practices of plastic surgery or beauty products that promise to end the cycle to aging, there is no official and permanent way to stop the hands of Father Time. “Dr. Heidegger’s Experiment” by Nathaniel Hawthorne is another example of the failed quest to end aging. “Dr. Heidegger’s Experiment” is about a scientist, Dr. Heidegger, who brings together four of his friends, Mr....   [tags: aging, The Fountain of Youth, Heidegger]

Better Essays
970 words (2.8 pages)

Essay Theory and Praxis in Aristotle and Heidegger

- Theory and Praxis in Aristotle and Heidegger ABSTRACT: The discussion of Heidegger's “destructive retrieve” of Aristotle has been intensified in recent years by the publication of Heidegger's courses in the years surrounding his magnum opus. Heidegger's explicit commentary on Aristotle in these courses permits one to read Being and Time with Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics and Metaphysics. My paper analyzes a network of differences between the two thinkers, focusing on the relationship between theory and praxis....   [tags: Aristotle heidegger Essays]

Free Essays
3463 words (9.9 pages)

Aristotle and Heidegger Allowing Personal Accountability Essay

- Aristotle and Heidegger Allowing Personal Accountability A disquieting article recently appeared in The New York Times. The article chronicles the story of Larry W. Peterman, resident of Provo, Utah, owner of a successful adult video store, and defendant in a case in which he was charged with selling obscene material. During Peterman’s trial, the following information came to the fore, "As it turned out, people in Utah County, a place that often boasts of being the most conservative area in the nation, were disproportionately large consumers of the very videos that prosecutors had labeled obscene and illegal....   [tags: Philosophy Martin Heidegger Essays]

Better Essays
6686 words (19.1 pages)

Heidegger On Traditional Language And Technological Language Essay

- Heidegger On Traditional Language And Technological Language ABSTRACT: On July 18, 1962, Martin Heidegger delivered a lecture entitled Traditional Language and Technological Language in which he argues that the opposition between these two languages concerns our very essence. I examine the nature of this opposition by developing his argument within his particular context and in the general light of his reflections on language. In different sections on technology and language, I summarize much of what he had said in previous writings on the topic (viz., "Die Frage nach der Technik" and "Der Weg zur Sprache"), including his preliminary comments contrasting instruction with teaching, and char...   [tags: Heidegger Language Languages Essays]

Free Essays
5764 words (16.5 pages)

Authenticity Is Not Constituted By Standard Values Essay

- Vanning and William have illustrated that authenticity of self is a method of social control through which a set of qualities are brought forth that represents the particular ideals of the time. Therefore, authenticity is not constituted by standard values, but adopts a new ideal according to the social and cultural context (Vannini and Williams 2009, p.3). Accordingly, Authenticity is defined as being consistently “true to oneself” and subsequently, societal institutions and values such as jobs, functions or roles shouldn’t contribute in defining the individual....   [tags: Sociology, Symbolic interactionism, Individualism]

Better Essays
1248 words (3.6 pages)

The Rebirth of Youth in "Dr. Heidgger's Experiment" Essay

- Life is short. Death is forever. Time is of the essence. When the performances of our lives upon earth have reached it final act, human nature forces us to reflect on the fragility of not only the human body, but also the fragility of the human psyche. We are all just visiting this life, just passersby seeking to find our way through the blizzard of existence. Literary works swoop readers to distant lands and drop them in life defining situations; Works of art that assault the eyes and force the mind to become one with the painting are just two of the many ways humans have attempted to stay connected to life after death....   [tags: Dr. Heidgger's Experiment, Nathaniel Hawthorne,]

Better Essays
1017 words (2.9 pages)

The Existential Concept of Authenticity Essay

- An existentialist believes an individual’s existence is absurd unless he adds meaning to it through his own actions. In the novels The Stranger and The Metamorphosis, the authors, Albert Camus and Franz Kafka, tell their stories from different perspectives. Using points of view, the authors show their characters’, Mersault and Gregor, alienation to convey the existential concept of authenticity. One becomes authentic when he or she lives their life according to how they define themselves. Camus and Kafka both use their own points of view to shape their characters....   [tags: Literary Characters]

Better Essays
748 words (2.1 pages)