Aporia, doubt and questioning…

Tubbs, N. (2004) Heidegger: Being and Time. in Philosophy’s Higher Education. Springer. pp49-72

Well, this was bloody hard to get my head around. I probably didn’t come anywhere close, but I think that’s ok, because what I did get from this is the importance of doubt and non-knowing – the ‘negative’ – in learning. Also that what drives learning is the withdrawal of the ‘answer’ (the ‘abstract certainties and identities that would end our learning’), and in learning we are the gap (between what is already known, and what will end the learning). I also learned six (six!) new words.

Is there anything else I want to say about this? I don’t know. Maybe I should revisit Heidegger again at some point. Tubbs assumes a thorough understanding of the concepts Dasein, Being and Time, and I thought mine would be sufficient, but I still found the syntax unexpected.

I’ll just note down a few quick win points and questions for now – paraphrased from the introduction and Chapter 3 (on Heidegger):

Aporia is not only the difficulty of thinking, it is the truth of thinking. Thinking itself presupposes some sort of struggle or dilemma.

Questioning will become the highest form of knowledge – because it articulates doubt and specifies not-knowing.

Too many students pass through HE never having been given the space in which to pursue the necessity of their own doubts – the opportunity to develop negative capability.

The technological approach is alien to the process where we come to understand our own existence. Technology has taken over and philosophy is at an end – only a new god can save us.

Teaching and learning are a call for something to happen, and that something is themselves; they have intrinsic value.

To experience and endure the abysses of existence is in itself already a higher answer than any of the all-too-cheap answers afforded by artificial systems of thought – to struggle with unanswerable questions is a more worthy pastime than faking the answers.

Teaching is the most authentic expression of the enhancement of life against all the forces – we are warriors 🙂

Continuing the theme of explaining philosophy with reference to action movie sub-genres, I shared my thoughts on this with Brendan, who listed some kung-fu films he thought I would find informative.

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One Response to Aporia, doubt and questioning…

  1. I’m enjoying all of this Lindsay. I’d love to year your thoughts on my paper on enquiry/ questions in education…


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