Towards a New Dimension of Existence


Choi Woo-Won

대동철학회 대동철학 제37집 2006.12 pp.299-312
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History and philosophy are inseparably related to each other. This fact comes home to us especially today when an age of a civilization is at the endof its rope and is looking for a new breakthrough. Nowadays, a warning of a total collapsehas been issued to the techno-scientific civilization which has degraded, by its inertial force, to the road of mechanization, superficiality, and inhumanity. Underthe circumstances, where can we find a way to salvation? In world history, we can see the incessant efforts to overcome the limits of an age, and to go beyond it. There acts human self-consciousness arising from the essence of the Being. The aspiration for a future world makes us look back on the past so that we can find wisdom needed for the settlement of problems and take root in the concrete realities. At the same time, our reflection on the past recommends us to find an open future and move toward the realization of possibility and creativity. Our existence is the dynamic interaction itself between future and past.
Therefore, philosophy as a self-consciousness is highly realistic. It has already taken root deep into the soil of history. In this paper, it will be seen that the ultimate view reading history is metaphysical. We should be able to see, in the abstract symbolic expressions of philosophy, the living contexts of the interacting realities of the times. We should disclose the invisible dynamic interconnections underlying the social, political, and historical phenomena, give the right value judgment to them, and present a new future direction going beyond them. To this end, it is necessary to take root deep into theinner world of the essence of the Being, which is the origin of all meanings and values. In this respect, it is very serious that the history of Western philosophy has unfolded on the basis of mistaken concept of the Being. Western philosophy that has put forth rationality and reason should go back to its starting point, fundamentally correct its misunderstandings and errors it has failed to be aware of before, and start again from a right reading of ourselves. This fact requires us to open a new recognition of the history of world civilizations that is totally different from that employed without reflection thus far.
Based on these understanding, this study will examine some important problems facing today's techno-scientific civilization, and lead discussions related to a new paradigm of world history. In this process, it is our first step to notice what pitfalls and dangers are waiting for us behind the unlimited possibilities promised by the advanced science and technology, and to find methods to cope with them. Our final concern willbe focused on the new horizon in the study of world history, opened under the influence of the rise of Asian Community. It will become clear that the Asian Community has the historical role of making a road to the true World Community, by resolving the Westerncivilization menaced by inhumanity in the wider and more human tradition of Asian culture.


 1. Limit and Failure of Techno-Scientific Civilization
 2. Crisis of Man, Crisis of Democracy
 3. Dialogue between Civilizations
 4. For the New Understanding of World History


  • Choi Woo-Won Prof. in Dept. of Philosophy, Pusan National University


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