By Christopher Wink | Feb. 26, 2008 | 1,002 words
Martin Heidegger was born poor and Catholic in a rural village of southern Germany. Believers in fate will know that he was destined to go to university, take academic ranks in Adolf Hitler’s National Socialist Party, fall out of favor, regain a position of scholarly authority and become, today, one of the most highly regarded philosophic minds of the 20th Century.
There is little debate that the most important work contributed by Heidegger (1889 to 1976) was Sein und Zeit, published in 1927 and quickly translated in English as Being and Time. By most accounts, it was written in haste and, indeed, never completed the goals he set for himself in the introduction he wrote, yet it remains a fundamental work of Western philosophy. Using that and other precepts ascribed to the man, what follows will, in great brevity, review some of his powerful conceptions of the great questions of philosophy has ever posed, those of existence, of being and of death.