Die ewige Wiederkehr des Gleichen und der Wille zur Macht

The Eternal Recurrence of the Same and the Will to Power

Heidegger projected this lecture to serve as a conclusion to his three lecture courses on Friedrich Nietzsche: The Will to Power as Art; The Eternal Recurrence of the Same; and The Will to Power as Knowledge. It consists of an introduction and six sections. Heidegger’s overriding claim is that Nietzsche’s philosophy is the completion of metaphysics. The guiding question of metaphysics, “What is being?,” is answered by determining being as the permanence of the presence of entities. The doctrine of the will to power and the eternal recurrence converge in Nietzsche’s philosophy as the final metaphysical position.

In the age of nihilism, being refuses to reveal itself as itself and abandons being-there. The being of entities is reduced to manipulability and disposability. The meaninglessness of being expresses itself in the measurelessness of the self-overpowering power. And yet we can experience the withdrawal of being. In the clearing, being reveals itself as self-concealment. This self-concealing revealing of being is both mysterious and worthy of question. When we accept guardianship over the clearing and refrain from the will to dominion, a new and other beginning in the history of being becomes possible.