5 Pages


As a biological, social, and historical occurrence, death represents the end of life and is a certain fact of living. As the German phenomenologist Martin Heidegger elucidates in his classic work Sein und Zeit (Being and Time) published in 1927, death is the only thing in life that is certain, non-relative, irreversible and imminent. Heidegger states that death makes an individual whole by completing the totality of a person’s life. The individual is a being-unto-death, which implies a way of life that looks at the possibility of death as an intimate part of life, while it also isolates a person and throws the person back upon himself. According to Heidegger, death is not simply an event that puts an end to one’s life because it is a part of life itself. This suggests that death is always present in a person’s life; it is here and now. Death is always mine, which means that one must die one’s own death because no one can take one’s place in death. Heidegger observes also that death represents the possibility of all possibilities, implying that it stands ahead of us, and forms the ultimate possibility for us because we are always moving towards it. The final thing that we can be is dead. Moreover, death is an unsurpassable possibility, and cannot be avoided. It is a non-relational possibility because death dissolves all social relations.