Philosophical myths of the fall by Heidegger, Martin; Nietzsche, Friedrich Wilhelm;

By Heidegger, Martin; Nietzsche, Friedrich Wilhelm; Wittgenstein, Ludwig; Heidegger, Martin; Wittgenstein, Ludwig; Mulhall, Stephen; Nietzsche, Friedrich Wilhelm

Did post-Enlightenment philosophers reject the assumption of unique sin and accordingly the view that existence is a quest for redemption from it? In Philosophical Myths of the Fall, Stephen Mulhall identifies and evaluates a stunning ethical-religious size within the paintings of 3 hugely influential philosophers--Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Wittgenstein. He asks: Is the Christian proposal of humanity as structurally mistaken whatever that those 3 thinkers target just to criticize? Or do they, particularly, prove by means of reproducing secular editions of a similar mythology?

Mulhall argues that every, in numerous methods, develops a perception of humans as short of redemption: of their paintings, we seem to be now not quite a bit in a position to or susceptible to errors and fable, yet as an alternative structurally perverse, residing in untruth. during this appreciate, their paintings is extra heavily aligned to the Christian point of view than to the mainstream of the Enlightenment. even if, all 3 thinkers explicitly reject any non secular realizing of human perversity; certainly, they regard the very knowing of humans as initially sinful as imperative to that from which we needs to be redeemed. And but every one additionally reproduces crucial parts of that knowing in his personal considering; each one recounts his personal fantasy of our Fall, and holds out his personal picture of redemption. The publication concludes by way of asking even if this indebtedness to faith brings those philosophers' pondering toward, or as an alternative forces it extra clear of, the reality of the human condition.

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Is Søren Kierkegaard” (BT, div. 1, chap. 6, n. iv); “Søren Kierkegaard explicitly seized upon the 48 CHAPTER 2 problem of existence as an existentiell problem, and thought it through in a penetrating fashion. But the existential problematic was so alien to him that, as regards his ontology, he remained completely dominated by Hegel” (BT, div. 2, chap. 1, n. vi); “S. Kierkegaard is probably the one who has seen the existentiell phenomenon of the moment of vision with the most penetration; but this does not signify that he has been correspondingly successful in interpreting it existentially” (BT, div.

On this reading, the distinguishing mark of the distinctively ascetic form of bad conscience is the despairing, masochistic, life-denying conception of human beings as originally sinful creatures. The point of this disarticulation of the concept of conscience is thus to contest the Christian conception of human beings as necessarily, essentially guilty before God—as sinful simply by virtue of being human. For Nietzsche, that identification of humanity and sinfulness—the burden of the Christian conception of the Fall—is not only a contingent, but also a reactive and secondary episode in our development; it is not just that it could in principle be otherwise, but that in fact it was otherwise, before human beings turned away from an interpretation of themselves in the terms of master morality, and reconceived the necessary indebtedness of their subjectivity in terms of an absolute, self-annihilating guilt.

60). 4 First, Shakespeare’s play presents a murder committed by someone who is both prompted to it and punished for it by 4 William Desmond’s essay “Sticky Evil: Macbeth and the Karma of the Equivocal” in D. , God, Literature and Process Thought (Ashgate: London, 2002) links Nietzsche and Macbeth in a number of interesting ways, some of which intersect with the issues I go on to raise. For those with an interest in Cavell, it is worth pointing out that his recent essay “Macbeth Appalled” forges links between this play and a number of themes at work in the passage from The Claim of Reason that I quoted earlier; cf.

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