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The Overlooked Notions of Heidegger and Hickel

Martin Heidegger and Jason Hickel understood the world that technology would build from a much darker perspective. Their works mirror each other in a few ways. First, Heidegger discusses enframing, humankind's desire to control everything. Later in Hickel's framework, this shows up as he mentions world leaders' aspiration to have developing countries catch up with rich ones, hence enframing. Second, Heidegger further noted that how humans let themselves be utterly occupied by technology poses a threat to life on earth. This also shows up in Hickel's framework, wherein he differed that immense consumption doesn't precisely mean longevity and happiness. Hickel further elaborates this through the desire to grow developing countries, which isn't an option anymore as we're already overshooting our planet's biocapacity, leading to the dreaded effects of climate change and environmental degradation.

Any human living in the modern society would quickly agree with their notions as the consequences they have emphasized are now appearing to be the realities of the contemporary world. One observation and example of both Heidegger and Hickel's concept is environmentalist Gina Lopez's prediction back in 2017 which came into existence in 2020. Lopez contended the rehabilitation of the Marikina Watershed for it functions as NCR's "first line of defense" against typhoons. Lopez's assertion was brought up three years later as people observed flooding in some parts of Metro Manila, an incarnation of what Lopez had predicted. The government's insistence on ignoring Lopez's cause to fund other things for development, like technology, led to the destruction of many.

Consequently, Heidegger and Hickel also had ideas about how to save humankind from impending doom. Heidegger mentioned that art is techne, that it is considered a saving power and way out of enframing. Once again, this shows up in Hickel's de-development concept, wherein he argued that rich countries should catch down instead. Such ideas lead us to dart on Aristotle's point of the good life. As we learn to de-develop, we would attain equality, a good economy, and a safeguarded environment- which is plausibly what human flourishing is. However, it is essential to note that de-development doesn't mean completely giving things up. Instead, it is about understanding our presence and purpose in the world, which equates our goal to eudaimonia.

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2022 Heleina Taeza

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