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The Origin of Infinity

The Origin of Infinity 27 The Origin of Infinity ALPHONSO LINGIS The Pennsylvania State University To Heidegger, the incomparable dynamism, the self-perpetuating move- ment of Western history, which destines it to be world-historical, makes of the Western world the only historical world, is finally due to its nihilist character, to the absence of any finalities in its thought, essentially mathe- matical, essentially a calculation of equivalencies, in its praxis, essentially technological, essentially a transformation into the equivalent. It is just this absence of any term that makes it interminable; Western history is a movement without ends and therefore without end. That what it in reality pursues is power, that is, mastery over Nature, the subjugation of Nature to human nature, is an interpretation that Heidegger considers completely illusory; this bad infinite cannot be subordinated to man, that finite struc- ture ; on the contrary natural man figures in this history as just another fund or stock essentially comprehendable by rational or calculative thought, fund or stock of physical and psychic energies essentially transformable by technological praxis for its own interminable expansion. How extreme, then, when we turn back to it, seems the confident exal- tation of Husserl, for whom if the West http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Research in Phenomenology Brill

The Origin of Infinity

Research in Phenomenology , Volume 6 (1): 27 – Jan 1, 1976

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© 1976 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
0085-5553
eISSN
1569-1640
DOI
10.1163/156916476X00023
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

27 The Origin of Infinity ALPHONSO LINGIS The Pennsylvania State University To Heidegger, the incomparable dynamism, the self-perpetuating move- ment of Western history, which destines it to be world-historical, makes of the Western world the only historical world, is finally due to its nihilist character, to the absence of any finalities in its thought, essentially mathe- matical, essentially a calculation of equivalencies, in its praxis, essentially technological, essentially a transformation into the equivalent. It is just this absence of any term that makes it interminable; Western history is a movement without ends and therefore without end. That what it in reality pursues is power, that is, mastery over Nature, the subjugation of Nature to human nature, is an interpretation that Heidegger considers completely illusory; this bad infinite cannot be subordinated to man, that finite struc- ture ; on the contrary natural man figures in this history as just another fund or stock essentially comprehendable by rational or calculative thought, fund or stock of physical and psychic energies essentially transformable by technological praxis for its own interminable expansion. How extreme, then, when we turn back to it, seems the confident exal- tation of Husserl, for whom if the West

Journal

Research in PhenomenologyBrill

Published: Jan 1, 1976

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