275 II
Being and Time

primordiality, or the lack of it ? What, indeed, do we mean by the "primordiality" of an ontological Interpretation ?

Ontological investigation is a possible kind of interpreting, which we have described as the working-out and appropriation of an understanding.111 Every interpretation has its fore-having, its fore-sight, and its [232] fore-conception. If such an interpretation, as Interpretation, becomes an explicit task for research, then the totality of these 'presuppositions' (which we call the "hermeneutical Situation") needs to be clarified and made secure beforehand, both in a basic experience of the 'object' to be disclosed, and in terms of such an experience. In ontological Interpretation an entity is to be laid bare with regard to its own state of Being; such an Interpretation obliges us first to give a phenomenal characterization of the entity we have taken as our theme, and thus to bring it into the scope of our fore-having, with which all the subsequent steps of our analysis are to conform. But at the same time these step􀈉 need to be guided by whatever fore-sight is possible as to the kind of Being which the entity may possess. Our fore-having and our fore-sight will then give us at the same time a sketch of that way of conceiving (or fore-conception) to the level of which all structures of Being are to be raised.

If, however, the ontological Interpretation is to be a primordial one, this not only demands that in general the hermeneutical Situation shall be one which has been made secure in conformity with the phenomena ; it also requires explicit assurance that the whole of the entity which it has taken as its theme has been brought into the fore-having. Similarly, it is not enough just to make a first sketch of the Being of this entity, even if our sketch is grounded in the phenomena. If we are to have a fore-sight of Being, we must see it in such a way as not to miss the unity of those structural items which belong to it and are possible. Only then can the question of the meaning of the unity which belongs to the whole entity's totality of Being, be formulated and answered with any phenomenal assurance.

Has the existential analysis ofDasein which we have carried out, arisen from such a hermeneutical Situation as will guarantee the primordiality which fundamental ontology demands? Can we progress from the result we have obtained—that the being of Dasein is care—to the question of the primordial unity of this structural whole?

What is the status of the fore-sight by which our ontological procedure has hitherto been guided? We have defined the idea of existence as a potentiality-for-Being—a potentiality which understands, and for which its own Being is an issue. But this potentiality-for-Being, as one which is in each case mine, is free either for authenticity or for inauthenticity or for a mode in which neither of these has been differentiated.iv In starting with