Philosophical Investigations (Oct 2019)

Existential anxiety and time perception: an empirical examination of Heideggerian philosophical concepts towards clinical practice

  • علیرضا فرنام,
  • سمیرا زینالی,
  • محمدعلی نظری,
  • پریناز وحیدوحدت,
  • معصومه زمانلو

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 13, no. 28
pp. 235 – 245


Read online

Existential anxiety is an outstanding issue both in psychology and philosophy. It implies the mental rummage following the notion of existence, inexistence and related concepts. Martin Heidegger is a philosopher incorporating the meaning of existential anxiety and time perception in a unique comprehensive view, suggesting that there is a relation between being, time and anxiety. To the best of our knowledge, no empirical study has assessed any association between time perception and existential anxiety. The current study aims at investigating the mentioned association. Eighty four students in Tabriz University of Medical Sciences voluntarily participated in this study and gave their written informed consent. Time perception was assessed by verbal and production tests. The score of existential anxiety was obtained by the Good & Good Existential Anxiety Questionnaire. Association of time perception and existential anxiety was analyzed statistically. Mean score of existential anxiety of subjects was 7.57±4.75 out of 32. Accuracy of time perception was significantly related to existential anxiety score (P = 0.034); in the manner that inaccurate time perceivers had higher existential anxiety scores. The results of this study are preliminary in line with the existential concepts presented by Heidegger; indicating that existential anxiety and time perception may have common roots. This understanding about existential anxiety suggests further explorations and deeper existential reasonings, as well as more efficient psychological and psychiatric clinical practice.