Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Thinking and time

Sometimes I find myself thinking: if only I had the time, I would be able to do more, think more, write more. Like I did this morning: for some reason, I thought of taking Arthos' The Inner Word to my room, and relaxing with it there. It did work: allowing the mind to enter more fully, more slowly, into the matter. So perhaps: if I had more time, more leisure, I might have...

But then no: if I did not have any work, any commitments, to structure my time, I would probably waste my time. Thinking does not happen in a vacuum. It happens in the midst of a world, my world.

But didn't Heidegger have leisure, all the leisure in the world, to think, to write? Those long stays in the little hut in the Black Forest, those long walks along impossibly beautiful and solitary mountain paths.... How wonderful, I find myself thinking.

But then no: even the solitary Heidegger was actually thinking within the constraints of his situation. His impossibly constricted situation. His situation in which he had made his faux pas, his irretrievable step, which had then cast its shadow upon the rest of his life. It was within those very real constraints, his situation, his thrownness, that he was thinking.

There is no thinking in the abstract. 

1 comment:

  1. yes.. Father.. i too think that there is no thinking in the abstract. it springs from situation, thrownness, constraints... Levinas has something very similar to say...He says that one begins thinking through traumatisms or gropings to which one does not even know how to give a verbal form: a separation, a violent scene, a sudden consciousness of the monotony of time. It is from the reading of books – not necessarily philosophical that these initial shocks become questions and problems, giving one to think.