Re: RELIGION: The meaning of Life

Gregory Houston (
Fri, 14 Feb 1997 02:56:22 -0600

Damien Broderick wrote:

> BTW, I take it that
> Gregory's use of `ontotheological' reflects the influence of Heidegger or
> perhaps Derrida?

Yes, both were early influences, Heidegger much more so than Derrida. I
certainly have vestiges of both lingering within me. I imagine however
that I am influenced in some fashion by everything and everyone I read,
be it by questioning and accepting parts, or questioning and finding
alternatives to parts, or by taking disparate elements between what I
have read and trying to create a "transcending" synthesis. The idea of
sythesis comes from Hegel, though he believed that synthesis would
finally lead to Ultimate Truth or a knowledge of Ultimate Reality. So
here I employ Hegel's idea of synthesis without particularly subscribing
to his loftier beliefs regarding it. We tend to think of influences as
that which we have most embraced, but I would also consider myself
highly influenced by people such as Plato due to the depth of my
disagreement with their thought.

For those not familiar with the term, 'ontotheological' was used to
illustrate how preceeding philosophers (continental philosophers such as
Hegel in particular) attempting to remove God from philosophy, had
merely renamed him in various ways. Hegel of course did this by
replacing God with Ultimate Truth.

Gregory Houston