Wednesday, April 29, 2009

"we do not remain what we were."

Questioning allows one to gain a greater understanding and possibly even find the answer they are desperately looking for. Hidden within the question, the question which is directed toward establishing an answer is the answer. While one questions and reconstructs their questions to conform to the meaning of the text, the understanding of the answer passes through one’s question to find the answer. And this “is what gives the hermeneutic experience its true dimension.”(337) a question cannot be asked, if from the beginning (before the question even emerges) there is no preconceived, implicit, ‘understanding’ to the answer, behind the question itself. For one may not know what one already knows. And the possibilities of the understanding of the thing are brought forth through questioning. To test what is not yet seen as the possibility of the understanding to the answer. And once we come to an understanding of a concept, the standpoint at which we are thrown upon, to conceive of its true identity turns into pure illusion.

The relationship between question and understanding is similar to the relationship between language and thinking. Gadamer says “Language is so uncannily near to our thinking and when it functions it is so little an object that it seems to conceal its own being from us.”(340) one’s understanding of the question, seems to conceal within the question itself, the very understanding it is striving to attain. And the conversation that is being brought about by the questioning, requires a common language but this cannot be pre-established, it can only be sought out and formed through the conversation itself. Once this common language is sought out, the possibility of understanding, something which may be already implicitly understood (within the question itself from the particular individual), arises and is achieved only when: both persons realize the ‘call of conscience’ and ‘authenticity’ is being portrayed. For then and only then does the transformation of a particular individual emerge as a possibility to be different from what we were.

If questions are implicit in experience, can experience be implicit in a question?

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