The Danger [57–59]

urgently and loudly enough. Many go even further in their judgment. One proclaims that technology would be a disaster for high culture; it wrenches everything away into mere civilization. One says technology would be the catastrophe of the modern world, the certain downfall of which is gauged by the unremitting dominance of technology.

Such judgments today are at one moment exclaimed passionately and warningly, at another expressed timidly and despondently. They determine in their many varieties the current opinion concerning technology, notwithstanding that at the same time one greedily scurries after the latest technological advance, perhaps even must so hurry after it. But it counts for nothing that here one’s judgment and bearing in relation to technology are contradictory and that this contradiction could count as an objection. What is there that is actual in our Dasein that does not contradict itself? And yet this is perhaps even more actual than sheer logical consistency. We now pay heed to the judgments concerning technology just mentioned only in regards to how they conceive technology. They do not observe technology in regard to its essence and the provenance of this. They observe technology much more with an eye to its effect in relation to everything actual, by which one means that the actual would be found on its own outside of the essential region of technology: in culture, politics, morals, religion. One reckons how technology, supposedly one actuality among others, concerns all remaining actualities. One pursues technology, how it challenges forth the remaining actualities, how it positions them, assaults them with conscription, and thereby conducts them into utility or damages and disfigures them. One observes technology technologically. To be sure, this manner of observation corresponds to technology; it already places itself under the power of technological evaluation. But in so doing even technological judgments about technology never arrive at the essence of technology. They so little attain this that from the outset they even obstruct the way to the essential realm of technology. The said positions have never considered the essence of technology. And because their utterances do not speak from there, they remain external assessments. Thus it changes nothing if one abhors technology as disaster or prizes it as the greatest advance of humankind and extols it as the redeemer of

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