Explain the idea of ecstatic unity in Being and Time.

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In Being and Time, Martin Heidegger argues that ecstatic unity joins together the three central elements of temporality: the past, the present, and the future. It’s as if time is a complex triptych. To keep itself together, it requires some type of transcendent or grand mechanism. For Heidegger, that...

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In Being and Time, Martin Heidegger argues that ecstatic unity joins together the three central elements of temporality: the past, the present, and the future. It’s as if time is a complex triptych. To keep itself together, it requires some type of transcendent or grand mechanism. For Heidegger, that device exists in his concept called ecstatic unity. According to Heidegger, in Joan Stambaugh’s translation, the “essence” of temporality resides in the “unity of the ecstasies.”

Within this amalgamation, one can fall prey to things in the present, past, or future. For Heidegger, temporality creates the “unity of existence, facticity, and falling prey.” The three parts of temporality appear to serve as something of a trap in Heidegger’s framework. Both “remembering” and “awaiting” can create an “inauthentic understanding” of the present. It can engender irresoluteness and frivolity, thus taking one away from their authentic self and the serious issues of being.

However, ecstatic unity arguably allows for authenticity, as ecstatic unity doesn’t preclude Dasein, which can decidedly enter this ecstatic coalition, take over, and orient one back toward resoluteness and authenticity.

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