He seems to say the Logos is a public fact perhaps like a proposition or formula , though he would not have considered such things as abstract objects or even immaterial. But although the Logos is common, most people live as if they had their own private understanding. Like the Milesians before him, Thales with water, Anaximander with apeiron , and Anaximenes with air, Heraclitus considered fire as the arche , the most fundamental element, which gave rise to the other elements, perhaps because living people are warm. It is also speculated this shows the influence of Persian Zoroastrianism , with its concept of Atar. But it always was and will be: an ever-living fire, with measures of it kindling, and measures going out. This he found in Fire, and it is easy to see why, if we consider the phenomenon of combustion.

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Eating salad fortifies your organism. On horticulture and gardening, philosophy and irony. Sunday, 31 January On Heraclitus. The traditional interpretation vs. The Heidegger-Fink Seminar 1. Introduction It is in our nature to look back at the origins of every topic to be studied and, following the customary philosophical - historical inquiry, we return over and over again to the Pre-Socratics with the hope of moving forward to elucidate the fundaments of current philosophy.

The original texts of the Pre-Socratics are scarce because only a few fragments of thought have surpassed the erosion of time being uncovered, chiefly, from verbatim sources. We cannot be certain whether their meaning can ever be entirely restored, but our desire to grasp current philosophical matters forces us back to the very beginning. The basic and perennial questions posed by them seem distant looking through the scope of identifying peculiarities of our philosophical times.

This gap is due to the advancements made in philosophy during the time, which caused detachment from the origins, and today. Realizing these two facts, we need to redirect our attention towards the Pre-Socratics for two reasons: 1 to reconnect with the origins, and 2 to attempt re-interpretation of the Pre-Socratics, relying on our current progress in science and philosophy and, therefore, to hope for a better understanding of them.

By progress, in this context, I refer to some particular scientific discoveries in the field of archaeology, history and philology on one hand, and on the other hand, philosophical, from the reconsideration of the hermeneutical methods to the realization of understanding through the scope of phenomenology.

A rather severe problem arises when we try to understand the philosophical texts of Heraclitus, because we do not posses any original texts and the verbatim sources might have corrupted by being filtered through the human consciousness the original meaning of Heraclitus. The traditional interpretation The traditional approach focuses on Heraclitus in a twofold way: firstly, it attempts to provide some biographical information on Heraclitus and secondly it renders the standard view of Heraclitus philosophy, being generally directed towards the idea of flux, unity of the opposites, logos and the path to understanding.

I will follow, very restrictively, some of the capital features of Heraclitean philosophy, through the scope of traditional interpretation.

Although, inscribed in the group of the Pre-Socratics, Heraclitus overcomes his cosmologically-centred forerunners, the Milesians, founding a much more encompassing philosophy, which is not solely concerned with cosmology or ontology, but also integrating ethical and epistemological issues.

Despite the scarcity of biographical sources, Heraclitus portrait is unique among other Pre-Socratics. Unlike his forerunners, Heraclitus is not a public or charismatic persona, contrariwise, indications of his misanthropy are conspicuously inserted throughout his work.

He seems to have led a secluded life, feeling contemptuously for his fellow citizens [9] , or other philosophers. Otherwise it would have taught Hesiod and Pythagoras, and moreover Xenophanes and Hecataeus.

They put their trust in popular bards and take the mob for their teacher, unaware that most people are bad, and few are good. Moreover, he establishes the path for all subsequent philosophy, exercising paramount influence upon his followers. He may be not easy to understand, for all his thought is epigrammatically rendered into rather obscure and difficult to access riddles, - for these reasons he has been called dark or obscure [17] himself -, but his philosophy has been at all times esteemed.

According to Aristotle the Milesians in general were material monists who advocated other kinds of ultimate matter: Thales water, Anaximander the boundless, Anaximenes air Metaphysics ba8.

This argument is also known as the pantha rhei argument, which is conveyed to us by Simplicius. Also, traditionally, Heraclitus is contrasted to Parmenides, who states that only doxologically things appear to be in flux, but upon the way of truth there is no coming into being, nor ceasing to be.

Things are or they are not. Another leading idea found in Heraclitus and traditionally tackled refers to the convergence of opposite attributes, or principles: "Listening not to me but to the Logos it is wise to agree that all things are one. Therefore, the standard view is concerned with identifying the meaning of the following themes: Logos, wisdom and ignorance, listening and seeing and relativity.

He uses it in order to denote the underlying unity in the apparent diversity and change in the world. With his predilection for wordplay, Heraclitus could well allow Logos to stand for both his book and the subject of his book. Drew Hyland establishes that Logos is the intelligible law of the Universe. Under these considerations, Logos appears to be the structural order of cosmos, the rational order of the mind and the linguistic ability to communicate thoughts to others.

Although Heraclitus declares himself to be an empiricist, and thus the epistemological knowledge originates in senses, he also emphasizes the importance of reason [31]. One remark has to be made on the fragments [32] and [33] : listening is associated to logos in the sense of a spoken word, statement, and discourse whereas in the case of seeing, Heraclitus establishes a relationship to the cognitive verbs.

The Heidegger-Fink interpretation The traditional interpretation may represent the onset for the additional, Heidegger-Fink interpretation. If the traditional analysis of Heraclitus is founded upon comparisons and antitheses Heraclitus being contrasted to Parmenides, or to the openness to the society of the philosopher, or the understanding of his philosophy through opposite concepts , the Heidegger-Fink seminar inquires into Heraclitus, through the scope of the hermeneutical circle, i.

Wisdom is thus connected to the intelligibility of logos. For, though everything come into being in accordance with this Logos, men seem as if they had no experience of them, when they make trial of words and deeds such as I set forth, dividing each thing according to its kind and showing how it is what it is. But other men know not what they are doing when awake, even as they forget what they do in sleep. Having gathered all these hypotheses together, it is possible converge them towards a synthetic rendering of their meaning.

Heidegger and Fink associate to the steering of the lightning the idea of movement inside Being. Lightning or fire is the agent of differentiation between entities beings within the all encompassing Being. Therefore, movement and lightning are the causal agencies for coming forth into appearance [41]. What comes into appearance is not Being, understood as ever-changing, but the entities within Being are steered in such a way that they come into appearance as plural.

Examining fragment 41, a link between wisdom, thought and logos can be established. Logos represents here the unique intelligible law of the Universe, and consequently, the law wisdom of the Being. As Being is the sum of beings entities , Logos is the sum of thoughts of particular, individual laws derived from Logos itself.

This claim should not be understood that Being itself is moved by some particular laws. The argument for the previous observation lies within the first fragment: logos and Being are ever-existent, inasmuch there is no causal agency for their existence. One last observation deserves to be reflected upon: under the setting of fragments above, Heidegger and Fink attempt a phenomenological turn of Heraclitus ontology. Conclusion The traditional interpretation of Heraclitus constitutes the background for the Heidegger-Fink seminar.

There is a perceptible opposition between the two, but nevertheless, the latter interpretation derives from the presuppositions of the former.

However, the analysis of these texts has to match in depth the profoundness of the philosopher; otherwise, a shallow examination can point us to delusive conclusions. For example, the traditional interpretation claims that everything is in flux, resulting in more than a divergent point of view to the one of Parmenides, to whom Heraclitus is traditionally contrasted.

At the opposite end, we must be prudent of how much we assume because one cannot ever be sufficiently diligent when dealing with these matters. It would be an act of great arrogance, delusion and superlative self-confidence to believe that I have been able to thoroughly resolve such matters.

Philosophizing is the act of bringing ideas together, in an orderly manner, thus building coherent judgments starting from individual ideas. The beginning of philosophy corresponds to the primary layering of initial bricks of thoughts, in Ancient Greece. Today, if we try to interact with the original texts of the Pre-Socratics, we perceive that the fundament is frail, but the ancient philosophers had a more direct access to these sources, i.

I want to emphasize that post-Pre-Socratic philosophy did not consolidate on a meagre groundwork. It may seem to us that the ground structure is weak but the Pre-Socratic thought unveils itself today as a collection of adamantine pillars which sustain the entire structure of current philosophy. I refer to the recursive evolution of philosophical thought, where new judgments emerge successively from previous ideas, and where old ideas and thoughts tend to be forgotten, without permanent reiteration.

As every tyro in the philosophical sphere, I am preoccupied with the perennial, basic questions which have not been answered yet.

I believe that these basic questions need to be recurrently reiterated in order be reminded the origins of all philosophical inquiry. Natural Change in Heraclitus. Mind 60 : In addition, I do not propose an ambivalent understanding of Heraclitus, but rather a dualistic one, where one interpretation complements the other one. The man was in his prime [acme] in the 69th Olympiad. He grew up to be exceptionally haughty and supercilious, as is clear also from his book, in which he says: "Learning of many things does not teach intelligence; if so it would have taught Hesiod and Pythagoras, and again Xenophanes and Hecataeus.

However, having fallen in this way into a dropsy he came down to town and asked the doctors in a riddle if they could make a drought out of rainy weather. When they did not understand he buried himself in a cow-stall, expecting that the dropsy would be evaporated off by the heat of the manure; but even so he failed to effect anything, and ended his life at the age of sixty.

Moral and Political Essays. Cambridge University Press.



Eating salad fortifies your organism. On horticulture and gardening, philosophy and irony. Sunday, 31 January On Heraclitus. The traditional interpretation vs. The Heidegger-Fink Seminar 1.


Heraclitus Seminar, 1966-67

Heraclitus Seminar records those conversations, documenting the imaginative and experimental character of the multiplicity of interpretations offered and providing an invaluable portrait of Heidegger involved in active discussion and explication. At the same time, Heidegger clarifies many late developments in his own understanding of truth, Being, and understanding. Heidegger and Fink, both deeply rooted in the Freiburg phenomenological tradition, offer two competing approaches to the phenomenological reading of the ancient text-a kind of reading that, as Fink says, is "not so much concerned with the philological problematic He studied Roman Catholic theology and philosophy at the University of Frieburg before joining the faculty at Frieburg as a teacher in Eight years later Heidegger took a teaching position at Marburg. He taught there until and then went back to Frieburg as a professor of philosophy.

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