Heidegger And the Question Concerning Technology

After you’ve read Hiedegger’s Question Concerning Technology,

Heidegger believes we must understand the essence of technology in order to head down the right path of progress


think carefully and react to the questions/quotes below:


1. Why talk about the silver chalice?  What does that have to do with technology?

2.  Heidegger states, “what has the essence of technology to do with revealing? The answer–Everything.” What does he mean by this?

3.  Heidegger writes, “we are questioning concerning technology in order to bring to light our relationship to its essence.”  What is our current relationship to the essence of technology? What is YOUR current relationship to the essence of technology? 

4.  Heidegger writes, “What is dangerous is not technology…but rather there is the mystery of its essence. The essence of technology, as a destining of revealing, is the danger.”  This is a KEY sentence to understanding his whole essay and approach. What does he mean by this?  What is the essence of technology as you understand it?

5.  Consider a piece of culture…Her for example, or Fight Club, or even another work of literature/philosophy…Thoreau’s Walden comes to mind…how does the creator of that cultural artifact view the essence of technology? What is their point of view?

Heidegger states that, “man is uprooted” by technology… and that if man fails to understand and grapple with the essence of technicity than man will be separated from man’s true essence due to technology enframing our future.

While reading for IB psych, i came across this statement on depression in the New York Times, Yet there is reason to believe that mental illness is indeed increasing around the world, if only because urbanization is increasing. By 2010, for the first time in history, more than half the world’s population lived in cities.” 

I couldn’t help but think of Heidegger.  It’s a very strange and intriguing correlation indeed…the author of the NY times article cited above, Stanford Professor Dr. T.M. Luhrmann, implies a correlation between urbanization and mental illness. Urbanization necessitates separation from the earth and in my estimation that separation is exactly what Heidegger is discussing in, A question concerning technology. The phenomenon and correlation described by Ms. Luhrmann is exactly what he predicted. 

In fact my TOK people, read this article and lets discuss the connections between the information contained within and Heidegger’s Question Concerning Technology.

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