Problem of Ontological Difference [350-352]

it is now; its essentia, its what, is always the same (tauto)-and nevertheless every now is, by its nature, different in each now, τὸ δ᾿ εἶναι αὐτῷ ἕτερον; nowness, being-now, is always otherness, being-other (being-how or howness—existentia—ἕτερον). Τὸ δὲ νῦν ἔστι μὲν ὡς τὸ αὐτό, ἔστι δ᾿ ὡς οὐ τὸ αὐτό;31 the now is in a certain way always the same and in a certain way never the same. The now articulates and bounds time with respect to its earlier and later. On the one hand it is indeed always the same, but then it is never the same. So far as it is always at an other and is other (we may think of the sequence of places), it is always something else. This constitutes its always being-now, its otherhood. But what it always already was as that which it is, namely, now—that is the same.

We shall not next enter any further into the problem of the structure of time itself starting from the now-manifold. Instead we ask: What is implied by Aristotle's interpreting time as something counted or as number? What in particular is he trying to make visible in stressing the numerical character of time? What does the characterization of time as number entail for the determination of the essential nature of what we call intratemporality? What does "in time" mean? How can the being of time be determined by way of the characterization of time as number?

What is implied by Aristotle's assigning a numerical character to time? What does he see in time? Time is number as that which is counted in following the places traversed by the moving thing, that is, so far as we follow in the motion the transition as such and in doing so say "now."

But also it is not enough that we correlate the nows in juxtaposition to a point-manifold, so as to think of them as being at a standstill in a line. This talk of time as a sequence of nows should not be misunderstood and transferred to the spatial, thus leading us to speak of time as a line, a series of points. The now is something counted, but not in the counting of one and the same point. Time is not a manifold of nows thrust together, because at each now every other now already no longer is and because, as we saw earlier, a curious stretching out on both sides into non-being belongs to time. The now is not correlated as a point to a fixed point and it cannot belong to it in that way, because by its essential nature it is both beginning and end. In the now as such there is already present a reference to the no-longer and the not-yet. It has dimension within itself; it stretches out toward a not-yet and a no-longer. The not-yet and no-longer are not patched on to the now as foreign but belong to its very content. Because of this dimensional content the now has within itself the character of a transition. The now as such is already in transit. It is not one point alongside another point so that

31. Cf. Physica, 5, 219b 12f.