American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly

Volume 77, Issue 4, Fall 2003

Craig J. N. de Paulo
Pages 549-568

The Augustinian Constitution of Heidegger’s Being and Time

By tracing some of the historical and hermeneutical influences of Augustine on Martin Heidegger and his 1927 magnum opus, this article argues that Being and Time has an “Augustinian constitution.” While Heidegger’s philosophical terms are in a certain sense original, many of them have their conceptual origins in Augustine’s Christian thought and in his philosophizing from experience. The article systematically revisits all of Heidegger’s citations of Augustine, which reveals not only the rhetorical influence of Augustine on the organization of Being and Time, but also the fact that the conceptual inspiration of the work and the development of its philosophical terms are significantly indebted to Augustine. Further, an original synthesis of Heidegger’s methodology with Augustine’s thought on restlessness and conversion is developed in order to demonstrate the philosophical compatibility between Heidegger and Augustine. This synthesis results in what the author considers the foundations for an Augustinian phenomenology.