HomeLiceo Journal of Higher Education Researchvol. 6 no. 2 (2010)

Philosophy’s Entanglement in Metaphysics and Ontology and their Relationship to Science and Technology in Heideggerian Philosophy

Eddie R. Babor

Discipline: Philosophy



This paper argues that science and technology have both failed to acknowledge Being according to Heidegger. This failure is underscored by Heidegger inBeing and Time and his post-Being and Time works. He laments that science and technology should have shown due credence to a relationship of difference between Being and beings which he calls ontological difference and that science and technology should have, likewise, placed a considerable dose of importance to a relationship of identity – a relationship between Being and the human person. This is why Heidegger has refused to call man man, but Dasein. He places man above the ambiance of rationality. To him, man is a process; he is in a process of fulfilling his mission as the guardian of Being. But this goal is somehow shattered by science and technology. To become a guardian of Being, Dasein should embrace meditative thinking rather than calculative thinking. It is Heidegger’s desire that both science and technology should have served as pathways where the Being of beings and the beings of Being can be gleaned through. But because of science and technology’s rigorous utility of calculative thinking, they both proceeded to deprive man of the terminal point of his existence, i.e., to become the guardian of Being. Instead, they both reduced man to a mere commodity. Technology authors the resurgence of technological beings, viz.: computers, cell phones, microwaves, palm pilots, fax machines, DVDs, VCDs, among others. Consequently, Heidegger laments that science and technology have succeeded in enframing (Gestell) man and eventually they both have achieved to dehumanize man.

But this paper maintains that Heidegger is neither anti-science nor anti-technology. Heidegger does not deny of the enormous contributions of science and technology to us. However, he is also quick to warn us of the dangers that science and technology may bring to us like inventions that intervene and disrupt the intrinsic flux of nature, including the human body, or those that could bring grand scales of destruction to life, viz.: instruments of war that could surely bring mass destruction to any form of life, hungry and deadly germs that could result from scientific experiments, specifically in bioethics. So, to dispel these disastrous effects man must engage in meditative thinking to soften the appalling and abominable blows of science and technology.