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The Nature of Truth as Self-Made Security Will Britt (*Note: This paper has been wrenched, with some

violence, out of its context in a much more extensive treatment. I have tried to sketch some of the crucial background in substantive footnotes, especially numbers 2, 4, 15, and 30.)

Even though it continually withdraws from our attempts to pin it down, Martin Heidegger claims, being never relents from its unconcealment. It is relentless[1] in laying claim to the human essence as the place where being shows up. I take this to mean that, as human, we can never be fully estranged from the world (i.e., from originary truth as Heidegger understands it), although we are always more or less stuck in limited modes of revealing. I think, however, that we can be radically alienated from the world, or at least moreso than Heidegger can admit, so I want to work out an immanent critique of Heideggers account of originary truth.[2] As part of that larger project, in this paper I will first show (part I) that Heidegger seeks to give us a way out of the subject-centered trust in reason that has marked the metaphysical tradition. This trust, he claims, is really a kind of self-assurance a way of making oneself certain, a self[3] serving snatching up of a self-made security that has come to the fore more and more strongly in the history of Western philosophy. We could call this kind of trust in reason assumption (or even presumption). Heideggers proposed way out (part II) involves interpreting the essence of the human being as being-there (rather than as subject): something already entrusted to the historical, structured unfolding of access to being,[4] released into it rather than fundamentally estranged from it. Put differently: Heidegger re-thinks reason understood as the primary faculty of the rational animal, thus as a system projected by and centered on the human being as only a particular, historical interpretation of a broader relation that is not human-centered logos as the self-articulating of the whole. Not reason itself but the structured, historical granting of various particular patterns of being governs the relation between being and thinking. That relation is thus not something we can master; rather, we are mastered by it and can only be appropriately or inappropriately receptive to it. But in being mastered by it, I will show, we nonetheless belong to it inextricably. Heideggers phenomenological investigation thus discovers that although the nature of truth involves the human beings exposure also to the untruth (concealment) that lies at truths phenomenal core, we can never simply cease to be in the truth. This means that although he has proposed a change in focus for self-assuring trust (a turn from what-is to beings givenness), and although he no longer assures himself via correct representation, the way the metaphysical tradition does, Heidegger has not yet thought out an experience of trusting an account of our relation to unconcealment that is other than such self-assuring. Heideggers account of originary truth thereby remains a path toward self-certainty, even if it is for phenomenologists rather than metaphysicians.

I. Trusting in Reason is the Current Grounding Disposition (Grundstimmung) The basis for Heideggers critique of metaphysical accounts of the nature of truth is especially clear in his ongoing confrontation with Nietzsche. Nietzsche claims that [t]ruth is the kind of error without which a certain species of life could not live.[5] On its face, this is a kind of pragmatic account of the truth relation, but the characterization of truth as error presupposes a relation of adequation (whether correspondence or coherence) between us and the real world, a relation that admits of correctness or error. In one way, then, Heidegger takes Nietzsche to be advocating

a thoroughly extreme position here. But in another way, he thinks that even Nietzsches inversion of Platonism and attempted destruction of the metaphysics of the beyond discloses an underlying univocity about what truth is. That Nietzsche can characterize truth as a subset of error means, we could say, that our understanding of the nature of truth has been betrayed in the course of metaphysical inquiry; truth has been discovered to be a fiction, a linguistic game, a metaphysical error. (Thus, although I cannot argue it here, I think this univocity has given rise both to modernitys lengthy fascination with radical skepticism and to more recent deflationary accounts of the truth-predicate.) In the third set of Heideggers Nietzsche lectures (those given in 1939), in a section entitled The Essence of Truth (Correctness) as Value-Estimation, Heidegger takes up Nietzsches account of the essence of truth for the second time.[6] He deals with modernitys approach to the essence of truth by examining the following claim of Nietzsches: Trust in reason and its categories, in dialectic, thus the value-estimation of logic, proves only their usefulness for life, proved by [7] experience not their truth. Heidegger interprets this passage (i.e., he thinks through the phenomenon of trust in reason) in the following way: he claims that both everyday and metaphysical thinking are grounded in trusting (vertrauen) that the relation between being and thinking is secured, or made certain, precisely by reason (Vernunft). He clarifies this trust as consisting in two synonymous claims: a) that what-is as such shows itself in the thinking of reason and its categories, and, in other words, b) that truths [die Wahre] and truth [die Wahrheit] are apprehended and secured [gesichert] in reason.[8] We have, he says, delivered over or entrusted to reason our whole capacity both to be brought before what is and to place it before ourselves, to represent it (vorstellen).
[9]

One evidence of our collective philosophical trust in this picture of reason may be found, according to Nietzsche (and Heidegger follows him in this) in our growing response to reasons accumulated failures. Our contemporary fights over values concerning both their relation to facts and questions about who can impose such values on whom are signs that our metaphysical trust in reason has been betrayed. Nietzsche claims: The feeling of valuelessness was attained with the realization that the overall character of existence may not be interpreted by means of the [rational] concept[s] of purpose, [] of unity, or [] of truth.[10] In other words, the relation we assumed between being and thinking does not seem to have worked out. The history of our disorienting discovery of their incongruity is laid out in three stages in Nietzsches posthumous book The Will to Power: 1. we have sought a meaning in all events that is not in them: so that the seeker eventually becomes discouraged [ ;] now one grasps the fact that becoming aims at nothing and achieves nothing so nature is not teleological but accidental; 2. one has posited a totality, a systematization, indeed any organization in all occurrences, and beneath all occurrences [ ,] but behold, there is no such universal! [ M]an has lost his faith in his own value when no infinitely valuable totality works through him the gods have fled, so human dignity cannot be grounded but only asserted; 3. one escape remains: to condemn the whole world of becoming as a deception and to invent a world that would lie beyond it as the true world. But, as soon as [one] finds out how that world is fabricated, solely out of psychological needs[, ] one concedes the reality of becoming as the only reality[, ] but one cannot endure this world, which, however, one does not want to deny.[11]

In the first step, according to Nietzsche, we realize that purpose is not inherent in the world. It is not merely the case, as Descartes already maintained, that we cannot know whatever purposes God has put in the world. In fact, there are no final causes. The second step marks the failure of

both Aristotelianism and German Idealism: the underlying unity that was sought without or after the medievals one God turns out to be merely our construction, rather than a necessary condition for the possibility of experience. The third step, the failure of truth, takes us back all the way to Plato, who, on Nietzsches reading, first sought the true world (of ideas) in order to make up for the chaos of the world of becoming. But the genealogical account of the history of this true world shows that world, too, to be all too human.[12] None of these anchors for value remains any longer believable, Nietzsche thinks, and thus he concludes: Trust in the categories of reason is the cause of nihilism.[13] We could summarize as follows: life turns out to be unbearable in the clear light of the will to truth. That light has shown us too much, leaving us no recourse to any adequate unity, any stable being that would not be completely given over to becoming. Values turn out to be only our projections, investments that are not true to any underlying reality. Confronted by this analysis, Heidegger wants to rethink the relation between being and thinking their unity but he must do so from out of thinkings very failure, in the midst of our disorientation and disillusionment. It cannot, therefore, be a matter of reassuring ourselves that we are valuing correctly, no matter how complicated such a philosophical reassurance might be. It must be an investigation of the very context within which the world comes to matter to us an account of our most basic integration into a world that makes claims upon us. He begins by attending more closely to what is presupposed in Nietzsches diagnosis. According to Heidegger, we should hear Nietzsches rehearsal of our collective disorientation as pertaining to an investment of values in and a withdrawal of values from the universe of what is, which as it were exists in itself and permits such an investing and withdrawing of values. [] We are actively engaged in valuation and devaluation.[14] But in telling the story that way, Heidegger will point out, we assume ourselves as sovereign subjects over against a world that is simply there, as an object, in which we can freely invest and from which we can freely withdraw. We do not attend sufficiently to what permits this investment, for we Nietzscheans have once again presupposed the relation between thinking and what is, rather than having thought through it from out of itself. Trust in reason as the unifying mediator between being and thinking may at first seem unobjectionable, but since it presupposes a certain interpretation of reason, it also takes for granted a certain version of what it means to be something. Reason is understood here as the representing faculty of the soul and, eventually, of the subject.
[15]

Early in the history of metaphysics, according to Heidegger, the logos was understood as what structures all that is, including the human being, such that we primarily belong to it and, derivatively, articulate it. When that logos was later interpreted, problematically, as merely a power of the subject a power which, to be sure, we did not give ourselves, but over the use of which we nonetheless have or can have full control then the modern concern that we might not be able to know things in themselves eventually had to arise in all its force.[16] We gradually shifted to taking this power for granted, rather than receiving it as granted. When seeking the truth is taken to involve assimilating ones representational faculty to what is by itself just there, not intrinsically related to me, then the standard of truth (i.e., the nature or essence of truth) lies in obtaining the security of this assimilation relation (adaequatio). The proper exercise of reason, in that case, must consist in following the proper cognitive method that allows the subject to secure beings as objects of its knowledge. But the most secure method turns out to proceed by only addressing itself to such beings as admit of, for example, mathematical representation.[17] This is because the principle of sufficient reason the most straightforward expression of metaphysical trust in reason understands the being of whatever is as representability in terms of reasons categories,[18] over which the transcendental ego exerts its structuring control. Knowing things turns out to be assuring oneself of ones correct representation, i.e., making those representations secure through the proper use of the subjects

power-to-represent (rationality or judgment).

[19]

Knowledge is (self-)justified true belief.

Just as when Physics necessarily assumes certain categories from the outset of its investigations (e.g., matter, energy, potential, cause), so that only what fits within those categories can show up for it as real, so, according to Heidegger, metaphysics assumes a set of categories (quantity, quality, etc.) and a process (reasoning) according to which what is must show up.[20] This assuming does not take being into account except as the a priori: in other words, once again as what is, only this time attended to in its manner of being, what it is and that it is. It does not adequately ask about the being of this a priori. The Aristotelian study of being qua being is, he claims, the study of what is just insofar as it is, not yet the study of how it is or of what lets it be. Metaphysics thereby tends to place the human in control of beings givenness and forgets, crucially, that this givenness shows up in accord with its own structure, to which we belong but over which we have no control.
[21]

Hence, in such metaphysical thinking, according to Heidegger, reason is the most extreme predecision [Vor-entscheidung] as to what being means, since only what reason represents and secures [vor- und sicherstellt] has a rightful claim to be in being.[22] For this reason, Heidegger takes trusting in reason i.e., as a background assumption to be a founding manner of beinghuman, a basic way in which comportment can be constituted (Grundverfassung), for it decides what will be allowed to count for us as real.
[23]

Because it decides rigidly about the unity of being and thinking beforehand (rather than assuming that experience grants meaningful truth and so seeking an experience of this unity), reason or at any rate this kind of rationalism blocks genuine thinking, which questions back toward the sources without assuming their character. All nosis is taken to be dianosis. That is why Heidegger provocatively claims that [t]hinking begins only when we have come to know that reason, glorified for centuries, is the most stiff-necked adversary of thought.
[24]

II. Heideggers Grounding Disposition: Trusting the Unified Source of Being and Thinking [I]f the absolute is supposed merely to be brought nearer to us through this instrument [of cognition], without anything in it being altered, as with a bird caught by a lime-twig, it would surely laugh our little ruse to scorn, if it were not with us, in and for itself, all along, and of its own volition [schon bei uns wre und sein wollte].
[25]

How can we find a way out of this predicament? If trusting in reason actually prevents genuine thinking, according to Heidegger, then in what should we trust? Or should our grounding disposition even be some variety of trust? Heidegger does not directly answer these questions, but I think his response can be inferred from the course of his thinking. And I think that response turns out to be structurally homologous to the metaphysical trust he has just criticized, hence vulnerable to some of the same criticisms. First, we should note that his account of thought as necessarily attuned by some grounding disposition is what allows us to recognize the extent of the investment in reason that marks the metaphysical tradition. Part of what it means to belong to the world in such a way that we encounter things not as inert objects but as important and (partially) intelligible is for our thinking itself to be affectively involved. The openness of thought with regard to being, i.e., our very receptivity, is also vulnerability or exposure (Aussetzung). Heidegger calls this phenomenon holding-oneself/being-held-in-the-truth (Sich-in-der-Wahrheit-halten); I am characterizing the investment here as a kind of trust, since we are both invested in the world and invested by the world. We feel this in our finitude: the cost of disclosure, of letting anything matter to us as potentially intelligible, is vulnerability to what is thus disclosed.

Heidegger names this ontological structure of receptivity freedom (Freiheit). With this word he understands being-available, in the sense of the ordinary German use of frei to mean a place that is unoccupied and in that sense open or free for use. Nevertheless, he describes this kind of transcendental freedom as always already occupied, claimed, or invested: it is a certain kind of belonging to what makes use of us, i.e., belonging to being.[26] This means that we are as the place where whatever is can show up in its being (i.e., as important), but also where that very being can be encountered as such. It means being a there (Da-sein) as the performative site of the ontological difference between being and what is. We might be tempted to interpret even this transcendental kind of freedom as a property of human beings, something that would belong to us and be deployed by us. But Heidegger thinks this is to miss the point. We cannot in fact choose whether or not to disclose what is, nor can we choose whether to be in a clearing (i.e., to disclose what is according to some given sense of what is essential). We could put it this way: as irrecoverably intentional, exposed to and lost among things,[27] being-there cannot ever simply take itself in hand, any more than it can fully grasp or control the things amidst which it finds itself. We belong to being as its site of disclosure, and as such we are ineluctably related to, vulnerable to, things and their import (i.e., their being).[28] We cannot escape our ontological relationality.[29] Second, if our exposure to things as unconcealed includes openness to the open region as such, to the unconcealing of those things, then we are also exposed to the more basic selfconcealing in which unconcealment has its ground. From this perspective, according to Heidegger, if the being of what is addresses us, makes some claim to importance, and yet has not even been adequately asked about in the long history of philosophy, then this is no simple failure of otherwise very intelligent thinkers. Rather, those thinkers saw the problem in one way (asking after universal traits of things that could be ascribed to them as their beingness, their ousia) but could not see it more deeply (to ask what non-thing allows things to be at all). If this blindness does not depend on us, then it must be a structural moment of the phenomenon of beings own givenness (what he calls its essencing). This is what allowed Heidegger, in trying to understand the nature of truth, to interpret failure ontologically. If there is something continually resistant to our attempts to demarcate what truth is, that feature is not foreign to the essence of truth but part of its very way of being; truth is a matter of tearing things from their original concealment, revealing them in their relations to each other and hence as candidates for correct or incorrect statements but this is a tearing that can only ever be partial, and will be rather different in different historical situations. In this way, Heidegger subsumes the thoughtful experience of betrayal by allowing it to point back to a deeper unity. Similarly, Heidegger understands the unified historical experience of trusting in reason, then becoming disoriented to point to a more complicated phenomenal unity of being and thinking, rather than (with Nietzsche) deciding that being is a vapor and thinking is only a peculiar expression of will to power. In other words, for Heidegger, assuming the guarantee of right reason, too quickly pre-determining being, as metaphysics has and does, is still a way of belonging to being, even if one that does not explicitly own up to this belonging (i.e., it responds inauthentically). This implies, it seems to me, that Heidegger thinks we must put our trust in the structural unity of being and thinking, i.e., in the self-concealing (or intrinsically hidden) source of that unity. That source is the phenomenon of truth as unified in its various clearings. In other words, for Heidegger we must trust unconcealment as a complex phenomenon[30] in which we are necessarily embedded. But let us work through the evidence for this thesis more slowly. What does it mean for being and thinking to belong together? The question about the relationship between the human essence what I am calling thinking and the being of what is, namely, the question of what this relationship rests on, is, according to Heidegger, the unique question that all traditional thought above all must be made to face.[31] It is Husserls phenomenological

question of the correlation between nosis and noma, now modified beyond the constraints of a sphere of immanence. It is no longer a matter of switching attitudes so as to effect a reduction; rather, the givenness of being is intrinsically reduced, intrinsically hidden, and thus it enables a certain experience of truth as incorporating its own betrayal.[32] Concealment is at the core of the phenomenon of unconcealment. One remarkable upshot of this is that one cannot start with one side (being or thinking) and get to the other; one has to begin with their unity. Thus Heidegger claims that every way of thinking always already goes along within [geht innerhalb] the whole relationship [Verhltnis] of being and the human essence, or else it is not thinking at all.[33] This says, first, that we could not be thoughtful in the relevant way unless we were already joined to being. Therefore, secondly, something said about one pole of the relation must be seen as always already a description also of the other pole. Let us try to see what these two claims would mean. Looking up at the sky, I notice that the clouds are white and puffy today. I thus see that something is (the clouds are not nothing) and what it is (they are clouds). In an everyday way, then, I encounter the clouds in their being; I encounter a state of affairs (Sachverhalt). But I do not see this state of affairs; what I see are white, puffy clouds. Where in sensory intuition is the categorial designation that they are? It is a kind of excess, one that is included in any encounter with things that are, yet not located in perception. Maybe being here is something empty, a mere semantic form (the copula), but then why does it matter to me so much that they are? Why has this to be exercised the philosophical tradition to such an extent? Imaginary clouds would not reach me in the same way; black clouds would lay claim to me in a much different way. I am struck by the being of things, not only by the things. As Hegel also recognized (see the epigraph to this section), we would have no access to the being of what is if we had to consciously acquire it somehow, for example through correct reasoning. Even if it also involves this, the subjects relation to what is cannot only or even first of all be a kind of trial and error, reaching out from within itself to seize (more or less well) on what is just lying around independently of it.[34] To put the problem this way is not to take being as a separate entity with various properties (like intrinsic hiddenness). Rather, it takes seriously the attempt to think through the structure of a certain phenomenon: that of the belonging-together of being and thinking, without simply (or complexly) reducing being to thinking. Heideggers approach to thinking requires going along (or investing in) a particular descriptive way (Weg), encountering something strange an upsetting of expectations, the self-bracketing of the world and then attempting to see that betrayal itself as also an integral part of the phenomenon. This is possible precisely because phenomenology involves a focus on how something is given, seeking the things essence as a unity that emerges in interpretation as we go along the way. First, then, we begin at the level of what is, with the variable reliability of various things. This presupposes an everyday understanding of being, one in which being is not yet thought explicitly as the being of what is (the latter would be the philosophers refuge). Not only do we encounter being (as meaning and mattering) along with every experience of what is; it is even the presupposition for any doubt about particular things.[35] Although for the most part we fail to notice that our comportment is opened up by the (historically variable) patterns of import that highlight what is as essential or inessential, that-things-are can always be counted on to remain. If at some point we become enamored of this reliability of being (we metaphysicians), then we might try to ground our lives directly upon beings stable foundation, perhaps by living in light of the eternal forms of what is, or by appealing to the a priori as a defense against skepticism. Yet, as some metaphysicians in fact did discover (as we saw in part I, above), being then slips away, turns out to be general and empty, denies (versagt) us its reliability to directly ground our projects. We saw in part I that from within metaphysics, being shows up as the refusal (die Absage), the great disappointment, of our expectations for its constancy and meaningfulness.[36] Being, as

both Hegel and Nietzsche claim in very different ways, is nothing. At that point, Heidegger thinks the way out is to make the turn to thinking about how being is given, how it can turn out to be both most reliable and also nothing, the refusal of ground. This is a phenomenological move, except that instead of concentrating on the structures of givenness for what is, he asks about the givenness of those structures themselves: how is being itself given? Here the essence of truth serves as a model: being is given to us precisely as concealed, as withdrawing from us, bracketing itself. This means: every time we try to pin it down as a particular set of structures, as metaphysical accounts must do, we eventually discover ourselves again betrayed. But if we are granted the space in which to step back from this repeated experience of positing and betrayal what Heidegger calls the history of metaphysics or (as the repeated discovery that there is nothing much to being) the history of nihilism[37] we may be able to encounter that history as itself a unified phenomenon, a structure. Let us take still a closer look. If being and thinking really belong together, and thinking is ineluctably temporal (as ek-static transcendence), how can we avoid asking about the correlative temporality or historicity (die Geschichtlichkeit) of being? But Heidegger claims in the Parmenides lecture course that when we think history (die Geschichte) in terms of essence i.e., from the perspective of the giving of patterns of essence history (not chronology) turns out to be the transformation [der Wandel] of the essence of truth. It is only this.[38] To make sense of such a claim, we must recall the extent to which Heideggers project is to inquire into the unity of the manifold meanings of being,[39] without simply giving up and declaring that being is an empty generality. His attempt is thus to stay with the matter being and its complicated way of appearing until he can undergo an articulated experience of its essence (i.e., the unity of its givenness). So, in his first encounter with

[1] Unablssig. GA 6.2:354/Nietzsche IV 244. Cf. Martin Heidegger, Nietzsche, 4 vols., tr. D.F. Krell (San Francisco: HarperCollins, 1991). This is a translation of Gnther Neskes 1961 edition, Nietzsche, 2 Bde., which was reproduced as Gesamtausgabe (GA) volumes 6.1 and 6.2. For clarity, I give the relevant GA citation, followed by the translation volume number (in Roman numerals) and page number (each volume is numbered separately). [2] By originary truth, I mean what Heidegger calls the essence or nature or being of truth, what allows things (including beliefs and propositions) to show up as true or false in a way that matters to us at all. On his account, this is a temporal openness to things in their being (e.g., things as having properties that are essential and inessential) and to language as showing their being. In other words, originary truth (or being in the truth) is our basic access to an already-meaningful world in which sentences about states of affairs can be correct or incorrect. [3] GA 65:370, my translation. Cf. Contributions to Philosophy (Of the Event), trs. R. Rojcewicz and D. Vallega-Neu (Bloomington, IN: Indiana Univ. Press, 2012), p. 292. [4] I follow Richard Polt, among others, by interpreting being as the patterned givenness of the whole of what is. He calls it the difference it makes that there is something rather than nothing (Polt, The Emergency of Being [Ithaca, NY: Cornell Univ. Press, 2006], p. 28), or the import of things where import indicates both their meaning (i.e., in-principle intelligibility) and their importance (i.e., they matter; they are not nothing) (60). If, in an everyday way, we encounter the whole of what is as a kind of element in which we move, a space of familiarity (25), then that space is articulated according to more and less crucial differences. Being is the pattern according to which we always already find some differences marked as mattering more and others less; it is the particular, a priori way in which what is can

show up compellingly. It thus makes things accessible as things that are (in the double sense given to import above). For its part, what is, das Seiende, according to Heidegger, includes not only the actual of any sort, but at the same time the possible, the necessary, and the accidental, everything that stands in beyng in any way whatsoever, even including negativity and nothingness (GA 65:74/Contributions 59). Furthermore, this a priori pattern can itself be given to us in a thoughtful experience. This is what I refer to as beings givenness. The source of this higher-order givenness is what Heidegger calls beyng (Seyn), making use of the older German spelling of being (Sein) in order to indicate that asking about beyng requires asking further back than being as the a priori , but does not thereby require asking about something else (Polt 58). I would say, then, that beyng names the (concealedly) structured transformation of a priori patterns of givenness within which what is can show up. Or, as Polt puts it, beyng names the contingent happening of meaning, [of] import [] the making of the difference between something and nothing the giving of the being of beings (61). [5] Friedrich Nietzsche, The Will to Power, trs. W. Kaufmann and R.J. Hollingdale (New York: Random House, 1967), 493, p. 272. [6] He had left it behind partway through the first lecture course two years prior. [7] Quoted at GA 6.1:458/Nietzsche III 33. The quotation is from Will to Power, 507, p. 276, original italics. For Nietzsche, we trust in and value reason not because we have any proof that it allows us to reach what we idealize as the truth, but only because it turns out to be pragmatically successful. Falsehood can be just as useful, if not more so, than truth and Nietzsche thinks it has been for quite some time now. (Cf. Nietzsche, The Gay Science, 110.) [8] GA 6.1:477/Nietzsche III 50. [9] See GA 6.1:478/Nietzsche III 51. Capacity translates Vermgen, which in the broader context of Heideggers thought could either mean an anthropocentric faculty of the mind (Seelenvermgen), as Vernunft (reason) is traditionally taken to be, or it could mean an enabling, as beyng enables us to think it. Here it seems to mean both, since in metaphysics the work of enabling bringing human beings before what is is delivered over from beyng to the human faculty of representing. [10] Quoted on GA 6.2:47-8/Nietzsche IV 25; Heideggers italics. Quotation from Nietzsche, Will to Power, 12, p. 13. [11] Quoted on GA 6.2:46-7/Nietzsche IV 24-5; Heideggers italics. Quotation from Nietzsche, Will to Power, 12, pp. 12-13. [12] Cf. Nietzsche, How the True World Finally Became a Fable, in Twilight of the Idols. [13] Nietzsche, Will to Power, 12, p. 13. [14] GA 6.2:68/Nietzsche IV 43. Cf. Nietzsche, Will to Power, 12, pp. 13-14: Final conclusion: all the values by means of which we have tried so far to render the world estimable for ourselves and which then proved inapplicable and therefore devaluated the world all these values [] have been falsely projected into the essence of things. [15] Heidegger seems to be thinking of a conception on which knowledge would be a kind of possession: the constant or consistent having of a (correct) mental representation (Vorstellung) of a state of affairs (cp. Plato, Theaetetus). In this sense, knowing, having the right representations for the right reasons, deals only with things that are true (die Wahren: in this case, representations), rather than with truth as such. Cf. GA 65: 237. [16] Ratio is a facultas animi, a power of the human mind [as rational animal], the actus of which

inhabits the inner man. The res, the thing, lies apart from ratio. Heidegger, Parmenides, trs. A. Schuwer and R. Rojcewicz (Blooming, IN: Indiana Univ. Press, 1992, p. 50/GA 54:74. [17] Cf. Heidegger, Zollikon Seminars, trs. F. Mayr and R. Askay (Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press, 2001), pp. 99-110, for a reading of Descartess Rules for the Direction of the Mind. [18] Cp. Leibniz: nothing can be unless a reason for it can be rendered. Heidegger works through this problem in The Principle of Reason, tr. R. Lilly (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1991)/GA 10. [19] Heidegger locates the forerunners of the modern era in Luthers search for assurance (Sicherung) of salvation (in the super-sensible realm) and Galileos physics as seeking mathematical assurance (Sicherung) of nature (in the sensible realm). See Heidegger, Four Seminars, trs. A. Mitchell and F. Raffoul (Bloomington, IN: Indiana Univ. Press, 2003), pp. 1314/GA 15:292-3. The progression culminates in the absolute subject (Hegel) and its will to power (Nietzsche). For the whole story, see GA 54:57-77/Parmenides 39-52. [20] GA 6.1:479/Nietzsche III 51. [21] Such forgetting is precisely the visible manifestation of nihilism: we project categories (values) into the world, and we can take them out again (kill God, as it were), so they fail to be really independent conditions for us. Here Heidegger reads nihilism as just the hiddenness of beyng the negation in beyng, its refusal to become fully present as it shows up in anthropocentric accounts of being that take the latter to be nothing more than the a priori of knowing. Cf. Nihilism and the History of Being, GA 6.2:301-361/Nietzsche IV 197-250. [22] GA 6.1:478/Nietzsche III 51. [23] GA 6.1:478/Nietzsche III 51. Metaphysics trusts reason as a power of the subject rather than beyng as that which makes use of beyng-there. [24] Heidegger, The Word of Nietzsche, God is Dead, in The Question Concerning Technology and Other Essays, tr. W. Lovitt (New York: Harper and Row, 1977), p. 112/GA 5:267. This does not mean, please note, doing away with reason. Heidegger claims that it is not a counter-glorification of irrationalism (which, as a reaction, still stands upon the trust in reason cp. GA 6.1:478/Nietzsche III 51). It is, as for Kant, a recognition of the limits of reason. Thinking commences not by abandoning reason, nor even by seeking the destruction of its adversary, but by coming to know reason as this adversary, that which it must confront and whose depths it must plumb. [25] G.W.F. Hegel, Introduction to Phenomenology of Spirit, tr. A.V. Miller (Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press, 1977), 73. Quite appropriately, the absolute, rather than the instrument, is the referent for all the third-person pronouns in this sentence. Cf. Hegel, Phnomenologie des Geistes, hrsg. von H.F. Wessels und H. Clairmont, Philosophische Bibliothek Bd. 414 (Hamburg: Felix Meiner, 1988), p. 58, lines 7-12; and Hegel, Gesammelte Werke, Bd. 9, p. 53. [26] Heidegger, Basic Concepts, tr. G.E. Aylesworth (Bloomington, IN: Indiana Univ. Press, 1993), p. 57/GA 51:68. [27] In jargon: being-there is only ek-sistent as in-sistent, standing-out [ekstatisch] into what is as standing-among [instndig] things. [28] Heidegger, On the Essence of Truth, in Pathmarks, ed. W. McNeill (Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press, 1998), pp. 144-6/GA 9:188-91. [29] Hence the broader context of the quotation with which I opened the paper: Whenever metaphysical thinking takes the [phenomenological] step back, it prepares itself to open up a

space for the human essence. But such opening is prompted by being, so that we can think in the direction of an encounter with beings peculiar structure, that of becoming-present only by remaining absent. The step back does not cast metaphysics aside. Rather, thinking now has for the first time the essence of metaphysics before it, and [even] surrounding it, circumscribed as experiences of what is as such. The being-historical lineage of metaphysics remains what is to be thought. Even beings withdrawal remains a relation, one in which being itself lets its dwelling-place come to it, i.e., relates to it by drawing it forth. As this relation, even in absencing, being never relents from its unconcealment, [although] in that being withholds itself, this unconcealment is only released as the unconcealment of what is as such. As the approach that never lets up on its dwelling-place, being is relentless. [] It lays claim to this dwelling-place (GA 6.2:353-4/Nietzsche IV 244). [30] By a complex phenomenon I mean one that has two sides to it, like a coin. The two sides in this case are revelation and concealment. We could also say that it is a mode of trusting that incorporates or anticipates its own betrayal. Heidegger articulates it by saying that we are both in the truth and in the untruth. [31] Heidegger, What is Called Thinking?, tr. J.G. Gray (New York: Harper and Row, 1974), p. 79, trans. mod./GA 8:85. [32] Cf. Truth, in its essence, is un-truth (The Origin of the Work of Art, in Basic Writings, rev./exp. edition, ed. D.F. Krell [San Francisco: HarperCollins, 1993], p. 179/GA 5:41). The claim is repeated in the roughly contemporaneous Contributions: The essence of truth is un-truth (GA 65:356/Contributions 281). [33] GA 8:85/WCT? 80, trans. mod., original italics. [34] I take something like this to be the reason why being is the first object of the intellect for St. Thomas. [35] For how could we doubt what is in whatever respect if what is called being did not remain in the first place reliable [verllich]? Being is the most reliable [das Verllichste], and this so unconditionally that, in all spheres of our comportment toward what is, we do not ever become clear as to the reliance [Verla] we everywhere place upon it (GA 51:62/Basic Concepts 52). [36] GA 51:62-3/Basic Concepts 53. [37] [D]oes not nihilism also, or perhaps first of all, put itself properly into play where not only is there nothing to what is but also nothing to being? Indeed. Where there is simply nothing to what is, one might find nihilism, but one will not encounter its essence, which first appears where the nihil concerns being itself. The essence of nihilism is the history in which there is nothing to being itself (GA 6.2:304/Nietzsche IV 201). [38] GA 54:80-81/Parmenides 54-55, trans. mod., original italics restored. [39] Aristotle lists being as potency and activity, being as truth, being as categorical (of which the first category is ousia, substance), and being as the incidental (cf. Metaphysics E.2). Heidegger extends this list historically: being has been understood as nature (phusis), form or idea (eidos, idea), activity (energeia, actus), createdness (ens creatum), essence and existence (essentia et existentia), objectivity (Gegenstndlichkeit), subjectivity, and will.