294 II. 1
Being and Time

still outstanding but which has been reduced to a minimum. Death is something that stands before us—something impending.1

However, there is much that can impend for Dasein as Being-in-the-world. The character of impendence is not distinctive of death. On the contrary, this Interpretation could even lead us to suppose that death must be understood in the sense of some impending event encountered environmentally. For instance, a storm, the remodeling of the house, or the arrival of a friend, may be impending; and these are entities which are respectively present-at-hand, ready-to-hand, and there-with-us. The death which impends does not have this kind of Being.

But there may also be impending for Dasein a journey, for instance, or a disputation with Others, or the forgoing of something of a kind which Dasein itself can be—its own possibilities of Being, which are based on its Being with Others.

Death is a possibility-of-Being which Dasein itself has to take over in every case. With death, Dasein stands before itself in its ownmost potentiality-for-Being. This is a possibility in which the issue is nothing less than Dasein's Being-in-the-world. Its death is the possibility of no-longer being-able-to-be-there.2 If Dasein stands before itself as this possibility, it has been fully assigned to its ownmost potentiality-for-Being. When it stands before itself in this way, all its relations to any other Dasein have been undone.3 This ownmost non-relational4 possibility is at the same time the uttermost one.

As potentiality-for-Being, Dasein cannot outstrip the possibility of death. Death is the possibility of the absolute impossibility of Dasein. Thus death reveals itself as that possibility which is one's ownmost, which is non-relational, and which is not to be outstripped [unüberholbare]. [251] As such, death is something distinctively impending. Its existential possibility is based on the fact that Dasein is essentially disclosed to itself, and disclosed, indeed, as ahead-of-itself. This item in the structure of care has its most primordial concretion in Being-towards-death. As a phenomenon, Being-towards-the-end

1 '... sondern eher ein Bevorstand.' While we shall ordinarily use various forms of 'impend' to translate 'Bevorstand', 'bevorstehen', etc., one must bear in mind that the literal meaning of these expressions is one of 'standing before', so that they may be quite plausibly contrasted with 'Ausstehen', etc. ('standing out'). Thus we shall occasionally use forms of 'stand before' when this connotation seems to be dominant.

2 'Nicht-mehr-dasein-könnens.' Notice that the expressions 'Seinkönnen' (our 'potentiality-for-Being') and 'Nichtmehrdasein' (our 'no-longer-Dasein') are here fused. Cf. H. 237-242.

3 'So sich bevorstehend sind in ihm alle Bezüge zu anderem Dasein gelöst.'

4 'unbezügliche'. This term appears frequently throughout the chapter, and, as the present passage makes clear, indicates that in death Dasein is cut off from relations with others. The term has accordingly been translated as 'non-relational', in the sense of 'devoid of relationships'.

Being and Time (M&R) by Martin Heidegger